BYU softball seniors Gordy Bravo and Coco Bond played their final game as Cougars last Friday, as the seniors fell to Nebraska 2-0. Bravo and Bond were influential in leading the Cougars to 36 wins and the West Coast Conference title for the third year in a row.
BYU head coach Gordon Eakin didn’t mince words when asked of their contribution to the program.
“They have both been four-year starters,” Eakin said. “They have provided great leadership for our team.”
The Cougars clinched their conference title after winning a 12-inning game against San Diego on May 13. BYU won the game 1-0 thanks to a RBI single by Bravo.
Bravo and Bond have been instrumental to the Cougars’ success throughout their careers. They’ve helped the BYU softball team win the WCC title each of the last three years and a Pacific Coast Softball Conference championship during their freshman year in 2013.
Bravo’s passion for softball stems from her family’s love of the sport. While on the field, she described herself as being “happy and joyful.”
Bravo had a lot to be happy about. The Cougars went 36-21 on the season and Bravo hit .312 on the season with just 15 strikeouts.
Bond also grew to love the sport because of the influence of family members. Her sisters played in high school and her dad played in a slow-pitch adult league.
“I grew up on the field,” Bond said.
Bond and Bravo’s teammates are grateful for the leadership they have provided in these positions throughout their time in Provo.
“They are both key leaders in our defense and have had a huge impact in our defensive success this year both verbally and through example,” said junior first-baseman Ashley Thompson. “We’ll have some big shoes to fill after this year.”
Bond and Bravo have indeed left some big shoes to fill as shown by their many notable accomplishments during their time in Provo.
Bravo received the PCSC Freshman of the Year Award in 2013. She also received the College Sports Madness PCSC Field Player of the Year Award in 2013 and 2015.
She is a career .367 hitter and has driven in 96 runs. She also has a .954 fielding percentage in her career.
Bond received All-WCC Academic Team selections her sophomore and junior seasons. She’s hit 22 home runs and driven in 93 runs in her career with a .242 average, including a career-high 11 homers in 2015. Her .763 slugging percentage in 2015 ranked her No. 1 in the WCC.
Not only did Bond and Bravo perform at a high level on the field, but they led by example off the field.
“It’s the little things that make a team great, on and off the field” said junior Lauren Bell.
Bond and Bravo will be surely missed by all their teammates. In a similar manner, Bond and Bravo feel a special connection with their teammates which has made their BYU experience truly memorable.
“I will always remember how many friends I gained on the team,” Bond said.