« Softball 2013

Kara Dill



Dill has been an exceptional student since stepping foot on campus, graduating with her Bachelor’s degree three semesters early in December 2011. Dill held an undergraduate GPA of 3.747 and is currently working towards her Master’s degree in exercise physiology and is scheduled to graduate in May 2013. Her graduate school GPA is 3.471. Dill’s career aspirations are to remain in softball and be a collegiate softball coach. Dill has been on the SEC Academic Honor Roll all three years.

Dill on academics playing a role in her softball career: “I have been very blessed and given so many opportunities to get ahead in school. My family has been very supportive and the coaches here and staff here have been very supportive. I think I have always used my brain to my advantage because I do know what my weaknesses are and how to get around them sometimes. For fielding, I don’t have the strongest arm, so I know I have to have a quicker release and exchange. For slapping, you have to be very intelligent and be able to read situations and the defense and the pitcher and the pitch caller. I do try to use that to my advantage. My parents always said I had a big brain and I needed to use it.”


Dill, who claims to be a leader by example, has taken a huge leadership role this season as one of two seniors on the squad. Dill was named team captain for the Wildcats, but didn’t just take that as a title. Instead, she went to head coach Rachel Lawson and head strength and conditioning coach Stephanie Tracey-Simmons to ask what traits make a good captain. Dill admits she hates to disappoint anyone and in the rare case she ever does, it just motivates her to work harder to make sure it never happens again. UK Athletics is recognizing Dill for her strong character by inducting her into the Frank G. Ham Society of Character.

Dill on having to be a leader this season for UK: “Definitely have felt it was time for me to step up and have a leadership role. I think my personality has always been more of an action-based leadership. Being a captain this year, I have had to step out of that comfort zone and be more of a vocal leader, which I am not used to. For me, that was a big part of stepping up and out of my comfort zone and doing what is best for the team. We lost six seniors last season and they were all integral parts of our program and now there are only two seniors with that experience. So I feel we have to make a bigger impact on them even though there are less of us.”


Dill has spent over 30 hours of community service at Kentucky, helping with God’s Pantry and ringing the bell for Salvation Army. She has also served as a volunteer for several organizations, including YMCA and Southland Christian Church’s clothing drive. Dill has helped serve her fellow students as well, volunteering for UK Fusion, which is a one-day community service adventure for UK students and Big Blue U, which helps introduce incoming students to campus life.

Dill on Community Service: “I think our athletic department here does a really good job of offering us those opportunities. Our two Student Athletic Council members always keep us involved as well. We get so much as athletes that sometimes we get caught in the getting instead of the giving. A big part of being a student-athlete here is that we get to go out and help this community and our fans that need it the most. The atmosphere that Mr. Barnhart creates is incredible. He doesn’t just say, ‘Here go do this.’ He gives us the opportunity to do it ourselves and really get to appreciate helping this community.”


Dill is a two-time All-SEC second team honoree (2011, 2012), who also was named a NFCA All-Region second-team honoree in 2011. Dill has started 133 consecutive games for the Wildcats and led the team in batting average last season with a .351 (71-for-202) clip, including 10 doubles, a team-high five triples, one homer and 18 RBI. Dill also led the 2012 squad in stolen bases with 21 while hitting .377 with 44 runs scored, six doubles, three triples, 21 RBI and 20 stolen bases … Dill’s .377 batting average in 2011 ranks eighth all-time, while she also ranks fifth on the single-season list in at bats, hits, triples and runs. Dill’s career batting average of .332 ranks fifth all-time in UK’s history book, while she sits 10th all-time in triples and sixth in stolen bases. Dill has shined against SEC powerhouses the last two seasons, hitting .304 against SEC teams last season and .346 in 2011.

Coach Rachel Lawson on Dill: “Kara Dill is obviously a team leader. She’s, I would say, our top returning player both offensively and defensively. She’s done a really nice job of kind of showing the younger kids how to play the game, and she plays it really hard. She’s brought her A-game to practice every day, which has been really nice. I think she’s helped them progress quite a bit. Kara is exceptionally smart and on game days she is really, really focused and driven.”