JoBi Heath Moving On Up
Junior third baseman JoBi Heath, No. 13, fields a ball during a game against Nebraska-Kearney University on March 9 at Broncho Softball Field. (Provided KT King/ UCO Photo Services)
oBi Heath, the starting third baseman for the University of Central Oklahoma softball team and one of the top batters in the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association, is continuing to help lead the Bronchos during her junior season.
The Bronchos are 23-14 on the year, and 12-4 in MIAA play.
Heath was a four time All-Conference, All-District and Edmond Sun All-City pick in high school. While at Edmond Santa Fe, Heath played shortstop and was picked for All-State as a senior, batting .431 along with nine home runs.
Softball was not the only sport Heath played in high school. Heath was a multi-sport athlete, starting on the Wolves state-championship basketball team as a freshman, and earning All-State honors in golf her senior year, finishing 6th in the state tournament.
Currently in her junior season at UCO, Heath is in new territory as she switched positions to play third base. Heath started in left field the past two years, starting all 119 games for the Bronchos in her freshman and sophomore seasons, and earned second-team all-MIAA in each season.
While some players might have difficulty playing a new position, Heath said she has embraced the opportunity.
“I played infield in high school and I love the challenge” Heath said. “I like being right in the middle of the action. I just like being able to play where the team needs me.”
In her freshman season, Heath batted .333 at the plate and finished tied for a team high 14 homeruns. That same year, Heath lead the team in at-bats with 204, which ranks fourth most in a season in UCO history.
In her sophomore season, Heath improved on her batting average, posting a .351 on the year, along with eight home runs and 53 RBIs.
Heath was ranked in the top 10 in six MIAA offensive categories in 2017. Rounding out her sophomore season, Heath finished third in both RBI’s and at bats, fifth in hits, tied for fifth in runs scored, tied for seventh in doubles and tenth in slugging percentage.
In a game against Washburn in 2017, Heath posted a seven-RBI game, which is the second most in a game in UCO history. In her junior year, she finished with 19 multi-hit games and 14 -multi-RBI games in 2017.
Heath is currently on pace to break into the top 10 all-time in both RBIs and home runs for UCO. But for Heath, she said records are just part of the game.
“I just try to play the game and do what I can each time I step up to the plate,” Heath said. “If the records come then thats just a bonus.”
— UCO Bronchos (@ucoathletics) February 15, 2018
Now in her junior season, Heath has improved upon nearly every one of her statistics. Currently Heath is ranked among the top two in eight different offensive categories for the Bronchos. At the plate, the junior third baseman is batting a personal best .416, seventh in the MIAA, and has a slugging percentage of .717, which is first on the team.
Heath is tied with Morgan Heard for first in runs scored with 25. The Edmond native leads the team in RBIs (35), doubles (16), and total bases (81), while also recording the most hits on the team with 47 and tied for the most homeruns with six.
The Bronchos are currently on a four game win-streak and Heath has played a big part in that. UCO looks to push their win-streak to five when they take on Cameron University at the Broncho Softball Field today at 2 p.m.