Libby Buchanan looks to continue growing her game at the next level

Published 11:00 am Wednesday, June 26, 2024

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

Beulah’s softball program has developed several college athletes over the years. The Bobcats had four players sign to play at the next level just in the 2024 class. Libby Buchanan was one of those four who signed to play collegiate softball, and she hopes to be a household name moving forward. 

Buchanan was a standout for Beulah during her senior season. She was second on the team with a .427 batting average while also adding 15 RBIs and 32 stolen bases. 

A stellar senior season does not come without challenges. The Bobcats battled inconsistency throughout the 2024 season. Beulah finished the season with a 16-15 record after a tough one-run loss in regionals. 

Email newsletter signup

The 2024 season was full of challenges, but Buchanan believes the team grew as the season went along. The Bobcats grew closer as a team and the offense began to come together towards the end of the season. 

“It definitely taught me that it’s not always about winning. It’s about bettering yourself and creating friendships and bonds that you never knew you could have,” Buchanan said. “At the beginning of the season, I feel like we all bucked heads. Towards the end of the season, we all started becoming a team and really getting back in our groove. We didn’t have the best record, but towards the end, we definitely came together to be a team.” 

Buchanan’s senior season taught her a lot of life lessons. She grew as a player in the process and saw several of her statistics take a jump from her junior season. Buchanan’s biggest area of growth came on a personal level. 

“I feel like I’ve definitely become a better, not only athlete, but person,” Buchanan said. “The coaches have prepared us not only physically but mentally. They’re just always coaching us in different aspects of the game.” 

The coaching staff at Beulah have guided Buchanan’s development every step of the way, but she has had other coaches developing her far before she ever stepped onto a diamond at Beulah High School. 

Buchanan has been playing with the Beehive Premiere travel ball team since she was in the eight and under age group. She has stuck with the program throughout the process and the coaching staff at Beehive Premiere was a large part of why Buchanan got recruited to play at the next level. 

“Our coaches always put us in showcases to be able to show what we’ve been working on throughout the week,” Buchanan said. “A huge thanks to all my coaches. My travel ball coaches are probably one of the biggest reasons [why] I have the opportunity today to go to the next level.” 

“They just taught me so much about life and been with me since I was literally eight years old,” Buchanan said. 

Buchanan possesses dynamic speed, which is why she ranged the outfield for the Bobcats. It is also why she was eventually put in the unique position of becoming a slap hitter. 

Slap hitting is something that is unique to softball and extremely tough to learn. A slap hitter has to be able to choose their spots and not get off balance when they run in the box. 

Buchanan began learning how to slap hit when she was around 11 after being switched to the left side of the batter’s box by her travel ball coach, and she believes it shows how dynamic of a player she can be. 

“Whenever people think of a slapper, they just think of somebody who can’t really hit the ball,” Buchanan said. “A slapper, I just feel like they just know so much more about the game and have so many more tools and crafts. You can bunt, hard slap, chop slap. There’s just so many different things that a slapper can do that a power hitter can’t.” 

Buchanan’s travel ball team and her play during high school led to her signing with Wallace Community College in Dothan. David Dews and the rest of the staff for the Lady Governors made her feel welcome and are a large part of the reason that Buchanan chose to commit to Wallace. 

“They’re just really great people,” Buchanan said. “They really had a main goal in the end. They were just coaches that were very welcoming. You could just tell that they were people who wanted hard workers and were going to make you work hard to reach your end goal.” 

“I’ve always known from a young age that I wanted to play softball at the next level,” Buchanan said. “It’s just something I’ve always enjoyed. It’s just a safe place for me.” 

Buchanan has already begun working this summer in the gym and she has been playing travel ball. She is fully focused on excelling at the next level, but she also does not want to forget about her hometown in the process. 

“I’ll just take what tips and lessons that I’ve learned from my coaches over the years and use those to help me be a better player at my new school,” Buchanan said. “I’ll always come back to some of their softball games and stuff like that.” 

Every college freshman wants to make an immediate impact, and Buchanan is no different. She hopes to earn a starting role during her first season. Overall, Buchanan just wants to be a good teammate and an asset to the team.