VIRGINIA BEACH (WAVY) – The Coronavirus outbreak all but silenced sports all over the globe. In the United States, games and events from the NBA and NHL to Division III softball have been cancelled.
In Hampton Roads, the Virginia Wesleyan softball team, ranked sixth in the nation, had to end its season, and forfeit the chance to win its third national championship in the last four years.
“I broke down completely. 100 percent,” said senior outfielder Madison Glaubke, after she was told the news her season was over. “I was hysterically crying.”
Glaubke, a graduate of Ocean Lakes High School, was one of four seniors who would not get to finish out her final year. “(It was) certainly the most difficult conversation I’ve had to have with a group of young women, and kids you care about,” said head coach Brandon Elliott.
While those seniors will not get to take the field again this season, they may very well get the chance next year. The NCAA is allowing all Spring sports seniors the chance to return for one more year of competition, if they choose. However, there are still questions which linger about what they may entail.
“We’re just trying to figure out if we’re going to go back to school, if we’re going to have to pay to go back to school, and just all those kinds of questions,” said Glaubke.
Another question- was the teams’ abbreviated season the last in a Marlins uniform for Hanna Hull?
A two-time Division III National Player of the Year, Hull virtually re-wrote the DIII record books, and helped lead the Marlins to back-to-back titles in 2017 and 2018.
“Selfishly as their head coach, I’d like to have all of them back on the field playing, but if that doesn’t make sense for their future and what their career goals are, we’re going to support that,” said Elliott.
Should she, Glaubke and the other two seniors return, they would have a chance to become the winningest class in Division III softball history.