COVINGTON – The softball program at Covington High School has developed so many great players over the years who have went on to have successful careers at the collegiate level. Lady Bucc senior Mara Newhouse is another outstanding softball player who has an opportunity to make a huge impact at the next level as she committed to play softball and earn her education at Wilmington College.
“Mara is the type of player I’m confident will step right in and help them (Wilmington Quakers) right away,” said Covington coach Dan Cain. “She is a strong hitter and that is her biggest strength. She has played a lot of softball against really good competition.”
Mara, the daughter of Russell and Jessica Newhouse, still has her senior season ahead of her this spring, but she has already made a huge impact on the Covington softball program despite losing her freshman year due to the Covid-19 Pandemic.
As a sophomore Mara batted .512 and had an on-base-percentage of .613. She had 17 doubles, drove in 46 runs, scored 25 runs and had 16 stolen bases. Last year, as a junior, Mara batted .380, had 4 doubles, 22 RBI, scored 22 runs, stole 11 bases and had an on-base-percentage of .458.
Her statistics from her junior season compared to her sophomore season are misleading due to where she batted in the lineup. Newhouse batted fourth in the order behind Nigella Reck to give the Lady Buccs power in the meat of the order.
“Mara didn’t have a lot of RBI opportunities last year hitting behind Nigella,” Cain explained. “But when she did have those opportunities, she took advantage more often than not.”
Due to Mara’s work ethic and talent in the sport of softball, she had additional options at pursuing her dreams at the next level. But what Wilmington offered academically and athletically made her choice to become a Quaker and easy one.
“I’m going to major in Criminal Justice and Wilmington fit my major,” said Mara. “When I visited them I really liked the campus because it is small, like Covington. That really appealed to me. The people were really nice and it felt like the perfect place for me.”
Wilmington wasn’t on Mara’s radar until the coaching staff reached out to her after seeing her in action.
“They saw her play in a travel ball tournament in Columbus and contacted us,” said Mara’s father, Russell. “That started the process.”
Mara kept an open mind and once she met with coaches Beth Floyd and Jillia Cook she was sold on her future at Wilmington.
“I like the coaches and what they stand for,” Mara explained. “It seems like a close-nit environment there. Plus, it’s close to home.”
“They know the player they are getting,” Cain said of the Wilmington coaching staff. “They have seen her play in person. I’m confident she will contribute pretty quickly.”
Contributing right away is an immediate goal for Newhouse.
“It would be nice to play and contribute a lot my freshman year,” she said. “I’m hoping to be their catcher and I want to continue to grow and develop as a player and a person.”
Newhouse has what it takes to accomplish her goals – much like the many Lady Buccs before her who excelled at the collegiate level.