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Henderson State shortstop Bethany Allen threw out the first pitch before LSU and Florida faced off at the Women’s College World Series on Friday night.

As Allen walked onto the dirt, the PA announcer at ASA Hall of Fame Stadium began to share her story. The story about how despite battling brain cancer, she would continue to attend school and play softball through it all — the tests, MRIs, radiation treatments. Nothing stopped the junior from playing the sport she loved. 

The moving and couragous story brought the crowd to its feet in Oklahoma City.

In April, Allen was awarded the Ben Hogan Award for Perseverance, which recognizes students, in high school and college, who have overcome adversity or injury to return and excel in their respective sport.

During Allen’s sophomore year at Weatherford Community College, she collided with a teammate while attempting to catch a fly ball. After the incident she went to the hospital and was diagnosed with a concussion. However, after undergoing an MRI, doctors found that Allen had a massive brain tumor. 

“I had no idea how to react,” Allen said. “People were confused that I wasn’t crying and why I wasn’t scared, but I wasn’t because that is not how I am. I just wanted to find a way to fix it and get back on the field.”

She went through radiation treatments for over six weeks every morning, but found a way to be at practice in the afternoon. 

This season Allen started in 29 games, tallying 26 hits, 12 RBIs with a .289 batting average. In the classroom she also excels with a 3.86 GPA while majoring in recreation sports management. 

“I don’t believe in giving up and not going after your goals,”Allen said. “I still believe you can do whatever you want to accomplish. If you put your mind to it, you can achieve anything.”

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