Ferris State’s top Dawg

Logan Fleming enjoying special senior season on the diamond

Ferris State’s Logan Fleming awaits a pitch during an at-bat in a collegiate softball game earlier this season. Fleming is off to a red-hot start to her senior season as she leads the team in multiple offensive categories.

The four year journey competing in collegiate sports is an absolute grind.

So much effort and dedication is put in from the time an athlete steps onto campus in hopes of the hard work ultimately paying off.

For Ferris State senior Logan Fleming, she is a perfect example of what hard work, dedication and effort can lead to.

Fleming was a standout at Rogers City High School and her efforts as a Huron eventually led her to Ferris State University where she became a member of the Bulldogs softball team.

“Transitioning from Rogers City softball to Ferris State softball was quite the change. It has been a privilege to get to play the game at this level. Getting the opportunity to play was something I had been working towards for a long time and I am super blessed to have had this chance,” Fleming said.

Fleming stands at first base during a collegiate softball game earlier this season. Fleming has started all 28 games for the Bulldogs, batting third in the order and playing shortstop.

Throughout her career at Ferris, Fleming has experienced some ups and downs, playing different positions in the infield and bouncing around the batting order.

No matter where she was at in the field or in the order, Fleming’s mindset was always the same and she remained laser-focused.

Though it took time, Fleming is currently enjoying a season for the ages and one she and the Ferris State softball program may remember for a long time.

There has been no bouncing around the batting order or shifting around the infield this year. Fleming has been entrenched into the number three spot in the batting order and has started all 28 games this season at shortstop.

Fleming is one of just three seniors on the team this year and has been relied on to be a vocal leader, along with leading by example.

“Although we have a small group of seniors, we each possess a different style of leadership that makes us super strong together. Being able to show leadership by speaking up and being verbal at times is definitely a responsibility of mine, but I also have the opportunity to lead by example,” Fleming said. “We have a really young team this year and as a senior, each and every day is full of excitement seeing us grow. With this being my last year, I am going to leave it all out on the field each and every last game and getting to be a leader along the way is truly amazing.”

Fleming’s leadership skills have been amazing and what she has done so far this season reflects the attitude she has by leaving everything on the field and giving her best effort each pitch of every game.

Fleming’s senior campaign got off to remarkable start as she was named Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) Player of the Week during the first week of the season.

During that opening week, Fleming tallied a team-leading .643 batting average in the Bulldogs’ first four games of the season. Fleming recorded nine hits, seven RBI and scored two runs in 14 at-bats while compiling a .786 slugging percentage.

“Being named GLIAC Player of the Week right off the bat was super exciting. I was blessed to have been recognized, but it was also exciting for the team because we received a low ranking in the conference,” Fleming said. “We now have had two players named GLIAC Player of the Week and I feel it shows the true competitiveness our team holds this year.”

Since then, Fleming has yet to cool down and is enjoying a season-long hot streak, leading the Bulldogs in nearly every offensive category.

Fleming is hitting a ridiculous .409 on the season which leads the team and she is tops on the team with 38 hits in 93 at-bats. The senior also leads the team with a .423 on base percentage, .581 slugging percentage and 19 RBI.

Fleming has done everything that you can ask for in a three hitter. She has been the Bulldogs’ best hitter, displaying her ability to hit for contact and power.

Fleming has also scored 13 runs, hit eight doubles, a triple, a pair of home runs, stole four bases and has struck out just five times in nearly 100 at-bats which is truly impressive.

The highlight so far this season for Fleming and the Bulldogs happened just over a week ago.

Ferris was trailing 6-5 with one out in the bottom of the seventh inning. Fleming stepped into the box with a runner on and belted a two run, walk off home run down the left field line to propel the Bulldogs to a 7-6 victory over Davenport University.

“I moved into the three hole this year, so my role has changed slightly. However, my approach and routine are still the same. Because of the role I am in, it has been super important to look for driveable pitches. I have extremely fast hands, which can be both a curse and a blessing in this game, but it has been really important to stay within myself in each at-bat,” Fleming said. “Hitting in the three hole means a lot to me. I have spent years playing this game and I understand the role of a three hole hitter. It is an amazing feeling to know the confidence my coaches have behind me, placing me in that spot. Batting third comes with the challenge of being pitched around and often times, pitchers throw very cautiously and this is why it is super important to stay locked in throughout my entire at-bat and not allow the pressure to become overwhelming. As an individual, I love to have fun and stay competitive. As a senior, my focus every game is to remember the blessing I received to play the game I love at the collegiate level.”

As strong as Fleming has been at the plate, she has been just as good in the field. Just as she is in a demanding spot in the batting order, Fleming’s role at shortstop is just as important.

Fleming holds a stellar .960 fielding percentage and has made just four errors in 101 total chances.

Fleming has spent time playing third base and second base along with shortstop.

Last year, Fleming began playing shortstop, but suffered a knee injury which required surgery. Once she recovered and got cleared to play, Fleming spent time wearing a brace which limited her mobility and her range just wasn’t where she needed it to be.

Fleming recovered from the injury and is back on the left side of the infield this year and has had no limitations.

“Playing second base was fun and before college it was something I never experienced, but that position sure has a lot of responsibilities and I enjoyed it,” Fleming said. “This year I have found myself back over towards the left side of the field. Shortstop has grown on me. It is definitely a tough position with a ton of responsibility, action and more, but as a senior leader for the team this year, I feel fit in the position I am. I have two of my closest teammates on each side of me and it is a blast playing next to them. It is a privilege getting to make lifelong memories with them and the team this year.”

As a team this year, Ferris State has been hovering around the .500 mark and currently holds a 13-15 overall record and is 4-4 in the GLIAC. With 24 games remaining in the regular season, Fleming will do her best to continue leading the Bulldogs in a position to earn a strong seed for the GLIAC tournament beginning in May.

This stellar senior season for Fleming could put her name all over the record book.

With half of the season left to play, Fleming is within striking distance of a handful of single season records. Fleming is 43 hits away from the all-time single season record and her current .409 season batting average would tie her for second all-time.

It is very likely that Fleming’s name will appear in the single season record book thanks to her incredible final year with the Bulldogs.

Along with hits and batting average, Fleming could also make the record list for single season home runs, RBI, total bases, slugging percentage and on base percentage.

“Rewards have never been something that have been a goal of mine. I am not the type of player that strives or is searching for recognition or rewards. My goals are team oriented and as an individual I want nothing more than to have an amazing and memorable senior year with my family of a team,” Fleming said. “A goal I do have for our team this year is to play our hearts out and show the GLIAC what Ferris State softball is really about.”

As focused as Fleming is on the field, she’s just as committed off the field.

Fleming is set to graduate this Spring. Fleming will graduate with a Bachelors in Health Care Systems Administration once she completes an internship in the summer. Fleming will also finish with a concentration in Early Childhood Development.

“I actually just bought my tassels and the excitement is really setting in. I have met some incredible people along the way and the times I’ve had will be some I’ll never forget. As much as I can say I am ready for what’s next in my future, I know I will miss the game and what it has done for me, but it is comforting to know the lifelong friends and memories I have will be something I cherish and have forever,” Fleming said. “Anything that may seem like a single victory for me, has really just been a reflection of what being on such an amazing team can do for someone.”