The Mankato West softball team hopes to return to state for the third time in as many years.

A staple to all those tournament teams is senior ace, Briggs Carlson.

KEYC News 12 Sports Rob Clark has more on why Carlson is our KEYC News 12 Prep Athlete of the Week brought to you by Scheels.

“She’s just a competitor, she likes to win, she’s a three sport athlete, great student and she wants to be the best at what she does, and it just happens to be softball season for her, and she’s a winner,” said Don Krusemark, West head coach.

Carlson is a dual threat at Mankato West,  in the circle,  the right-hander almost always gives the Scarlets a chance to win  by throwing off a hitters timing.

“I don’t pride myself in my speed at all, that’s one of the things I don’t focus to much. More of the spin on the ball and keeping batters off guard with different pitches too. Just using the different pitches to keep them off guard really helps,” said Carlson.

“Her ball moves for one thing. She’s not slow, throws around 60 mph. She’s a grinder, and any hits you get off of her, you’re going to have to earn,” said Krusemark.

At the plate, the senior is a hitting machine.

“She hit over .400 for us last year, this year is starting off the same way. She’s been our leadoff hitter the last three years, but this year we put her in the three hole for us because we want her to drive in some runs, and we follow her up with a couple of good hitters too, so we hope to score a lot of runs,” said Krusemark.

Carlson is bringing those talents to the next level, and plans to continue her softball career at the University of Northwestern.

“I’m super excited. When I was talking to my dad about it, I didn’t know what to do at the time. But I know that I can’t give it up, it’s something I’ve been doing my whole life, and I can’t stop yet,” said Carlson.

Carlson’s leadership is why she’s our KEYC News 12 Prep Athlete of the Week brought to you by Scheels.