Mariners leadoff hitter Mary Waldron earned what would ultimately become the final Sun Conference Player of the Week Award of the 2019-20 season, and despite a career that spanned just 60 games, she’s cemented her legacy as one of the best players in program history.
Waldron transferred to Coastal Georgia from Eastern Florida State ahead of last season, since which time the Mariners have compiled a 42-24 record and captured the program’s first TSC regular-season championship.
As a junior, Waldron slashed .339/.497/.459 and immediately wrote her name into the Mariners’ record books. The .497 on-base percentage was the highest single-season mark in program history, and her 38 runs were second-most.
Waldron was also hit by a pitch 19 times — eight more times than any other Mariner in a single season — stole seven bases, and notched a pair of triples, becoming one of only seven players in the program’s history to earn first-team all-conference honors.
“Mary was here for two years, during that time, she was voted a team captain by her teammates,” said Coastal head coach Mike Minick. “Her junior year she was named first team All-Sun Conference. Mary has started every game since she came to Coastal Georgia. She is a great athlete that can play eight positions. She showed her team first attitude by not ever complaining once about starting in the outfield even though she probably preferred playing on the dirt.”
The assault on the record books was on pace to continue through 19 games in Waldron’s senior season.
Waldron improved her slash line to .373/.536/.667 as one of Coastal Georgia’s three seniors this year, recording a double, a triple and a team-high four home runs. She had already surpassed her previous season’s total of seven RBIs with 12, she stole 11 bases, and was hit by a pitch 14 more times.
In her final games as a Mariner, Waldron went 4-of-5 with four runs, four RBI, four hit by pitches, and three stolen bases as Coastal Georgia split a doubleheader against TSC rival USC-Beaufort.
Waldron’s .888 on-base percentage against the Sandsharks boosted her career mark to .509 — obliterating the former career record of .398 held by Carli Bartholomew.
Another program milestone was well within Waldron’s reach, the Mariners’ career runs record, but the abbreviated season will cut her pursuit short.
Waldron crossed home plate 58 times in just 60 career games at Coastal Georgia, which ranks third-most all-time. Taylor Horne (76 runs) and Savannah Money (69) are the only Mariners to score more runs over their career, but it took those two 181 and 100 games, respectively, to compile their numbers.
“Mary is probably the physically toughest player we have had here at Coastal Georgia,” Minick said. “She is fearless and leads by example. She was well on her way to a second straight first team all-conference award. Mary will graduate at Coastal with a degree in business marketing.
“Hopefully Mary’s toughness and determination to win wore off on her younger teammates. She will be missed.”