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Hanshaw ‘going home’ to Rio Grande for her college softball career


Rock Hill Redwomen senior softball standout Makenzie Hanshaw signed a letter-of-intent on Tuesday to play for the Rio Grande RedStorm. Attending the signing ceremony are: from left to right, grandmother Sharon Conley, father Ryan Hanshaw, Makenzie, mother Amy Hanshaw and grandmother Sharon Conley. (Photo By Tim Gearhart)

Jim Walker
jim.walker@irontontribune.com

PEDRO — Makenzie Hanshaw will going away to college this fall.
Or will she?
The Rock Hill Redwomen senior catcher signed a letter-of-intent on Tuesday to play softball for the University of Rio Grande, but she sees the move of going from one home to another.


Makenzie Hanshaw

Hanshaw talked with multiple junior colleges along with several NAIA colleges before settling on Rio Grande.
“It just felt like home. I didn’t want to go far away from home and I went up and toured the college and it was just small and just had that country feeling. It was my atmosphere to be around,” said Hanshaw.
One of the key reasons Hanshaw chose to play softball at Rio Grande was due to a strong nursing program that puts students into the field soon after stepping on the campus.
She added that the faculty and administration work with the athletic programs to make sure they get their academics done and still have time to play ball.
“The people there were really understanding and super nice. I think I’m going to love it. The nursing administration is very good working with the softball program,” said Hanshaw.
“The professors are really nice and they talked to me about tests and how they work with them and softball. I’m just super exited. They have some new things that I can’t wait to see with the nursing program.”
Hanshaw has a simple goal entering the college level.
“I just want to better myself and be a better teammate and just pursue my career in nursing,” said Hanshaw. “I’m just overall ready to be at the collegiate level and continue my career.”
Senior Kayla Slutz is the regular catcher and has opted to take an additional year of eligibility due to COVID-19 shutting down the program last season.
Hanshaw is not concerned about how soon she gets into the lineup or how much playing time she can garner.
“I can’t wait to be around (Slutz) and learn more because she is super nice and she knows what she’s doing. I can learn to get even better. She’s good,” said Hanshaw.
Hanshaw is currently hitting .338 on the season with nine home runs and 24 runs batted in.
Hanshaw also has a lofty .803 slugging percentage that includes six doubles with her home run total.