Brooke McCorkle helps Butler Community College reach NJCAA National Tournament in her lone season

Greg Williams
Wellington Daily News
Butler freshman Brooke McCorkle is greeted at home plate by teammates Halle Hale, Emily Adler and Hannah Knox during Thursday’s home conference opener with Pratt.

EL DORADO, Kansas - Brooke McCorkle has been a household name in Wellington athletics. In middle school, she broke the track and field discus record, then in high school, she was a dominating pitcher and hitter for the Crusaders. 

As a Junior at Wellington High School, she verbally committed to play softball at Mississippi Valley State University in Bena, Mississippi. However, after COVID-19 canceled her first season, McCorkle decided to attend Butler Community College in El Dorado. 

"With the uncertainties of COVID-19 and if we would even have a season, I decided to come home," said Brooke McCorkle. "Also, I knew I couldn't get my Master's degree in accounting since MVSU didn't offer that. I gained an extra year of eligibility and I wanted to play for Coach Doug and his team."

McCorkle is coming off a freshman season where she helped Butler reach the NJCAA National Tournament. As a pitcher, she made nine appearances, allowed 20 hits, 12 earned runs and struck out 13.

As a hitter, McCorkle produced a .344 batting average, .533 on-base percentage, totaled 33 hits, six doubles, seven home runs, 35 runs, 35 RBIs and led the nation with 21 hit by pitches. 

The Grizzlies were able to have a successful 2021 season as they finished 51-4 and 26-0 in the Kansas Jayhawk Community College Conference (KJCCC). Half of Butler's losses came in the NJCAA where they suffered a 2-1 loss to Florida Southwestern State and a 5-4 loss to Yavapai to end the season.

"Since the first day of practice, we had our eyes on the national tournament in Yuma, Arizona," said McCorkle. "We broke out of every huddle saying 'Zona' because everyone had the same goal and we knew we could reach that tournament."

In Yuma, not only was McCorkle helping the Grizzlies in the national tournament, she represented Butler in the NCJAA Home Run Derby. Each team that made the tournament had to pick one girl to participate and the Grizzlies selected McCorkle.

"It was an honor competing in the home run derby, especially with how much power we had in our lineup," said McCorkle. "It was such a great atmosphere and a great competition. My favorite part in all of this was my amazing teammates as they were the loudest team when they cheered for me." 

McCorkle will be graduating from Butler with her Associates in Accounting and will be moving onto a four-year school. She has been getting interest from schools but has not decided to commit yet.