Mansfield softball coach Jennifer Haltom feels the need to celebrate and mourn senior star Reagan Hukill at the same time.

“I don’t know how we’re ever going to replace her,” Haltom told Texas Scorecard of her four-year starting center fielder now headed to the University of Texas-Arlington on an athletic scholarship. “She’s been a great player and a joy to coach from the first day,” she added. “I hope the kids coming back next season remember how much Reagan loved the game and how much fun she had. I think she hated to lose more than she loved to win and I hope they can have that same spirit.”

Matching Hukill’s production would also be a help. In leading the Lady Tigers to a 24-9 finish in her senior season, the 5-foot-8, 140 pound dynamo smashed a single-season record 16 homers and now also sits perched atop the school’s all-time list with 28.

“She led us on and off the field,” Haltom raved. “Her combination of power and speed is something you don’t see every day as a coach. She’s a five-tool player who’s not afraid to mix it up and get down and dirty. She’s one of those kids who’s always known what she wants and just puts in the work to be the best.”

Hukill turned just as many heads in the lockeroom, where Haltom said she was always the voice of reason and guidance for her teammates.

“If there was a problem, Reagan was always there to try and solve it,” she said. “The girls look up to her and hopefully she’s been an example for all of them.”

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