When the Minnesota Fastpitch Coaches' Association all-state softball teams came out shortly after the season ended, there was a surprise awaiting Hastings Raider softball fans. Freshman (now-rising sophomore) shortstop Kendal Jenkins made the Class AAAA First-Team All-State team in her first season as a starter for the Raiders.
Jenkins said that during her exit interview the coaching staff told her that they had nominated her for all-state but that since she was a freshman she might not get it. When the teams were announced the coaches told her the news and she said she was surprised but very happy.
After seeing some varsity time during 2018, Jenkins said one of her main goals heading into the season was to earn a starting spot, a transition that she said took some adjustment. Overall, she said she was happy with how her season went.
"For me I thought this season went good," Jenkins said. "It was a lot of fun playing with my teammates this season. I thought that my batting improved and I got a lot more experience playing shortstop."
On top of her all-state recognition, Jenkins was also named All-Conference Honorable Mention for the Metro East Conference. This summer, she is played for the Minnesota Magic program and will continue working on her skills at shortstop after having played catcher for most of her career so far.
The Hastings Raiders softball team went 12-8 during the regular season and 8-6 in the MEC, which was good for fifth. During the Section 3AAAA playoffs, they knocked off Henry Sibley in the first round 9-5 before losing to Rosemount 1-0 and Eastview 4-3.