Kristy Middagh
Kristy Middagh

Kristy Middagh is the third member of the USC Upstate softball program to be inducted into the Athletics Hall of Fame. Middagh is widely considered to be the program's first premiere pitcher and helped build a foundation for winning on which the current Spartan teams operate.

In her four seasons in the program, Upstate won 148 games and finished with a 148-47 record. Of the 148 wins during the four years she was in the program, Middagh was in the circle for a school-record 69 victories. Middagh ranks among the career leaders in 12 statistical categories, ranking in the Top Three all-time in 11 categories.

Having left school in 2002, she still remains the school's all-time leader with 69 wins and 25 shutouts. She ranks second all-time with a 1.24 earned run average, 87 starts and 67 complete games. In addition, she ranks second all-time in opponent batting average, saves, appearances and innings pitched. She finished her career with 326 strikeouts, which at the time was the school record. The total is currently third all-time at the school.

She also ranks among the Upstate single-season statistical leaders in 19 categories, ranking second with 24 wins in 2002, her senior season. Middagh started 22 games as a freshman and finished her first season in a Rifle/Spartan uniform with a 17-5 record, 2.30 ERA and two saves in helping lead the team to its first 40-win season and a 41-14 record. As a sophomore, she posted a 13-5 record with a 1.02 ERA in 21 starts. She finished her junior season with a 15-7 record, 1.05 ERA and 18 complete games in 21 starts.

However, it was her senior season that propelled Middagh into all-time great status at the school. Having not recorded more than 68 strikeouts in a season prior to 2002, she struck out 126 batters and limited opponents to a career-low .182 batting average. She finished the season with a 24-4 record and a career-low 0.80 ERA en route to being named All-Conference in the Peach Belt Conference. Her 24 wins topped the Peach Belt and established a new single-season school record. She ranked second in the Peach Belt in ERA.

Although she made her statement as a player in the circle, she could also produce with the bat when called upon. In 40 career at-bats, she finished with a .300 batting average, three doubles, 11 RBIs and eight runs.

In addition to her playing career at Upstate, she served as an assistant coach at Upstate while finishing her degree requirements in 2003. She helped lead the team to 25 wins and a second-round appearance in the Peach Belt Conference Tournament.

Middagh's induction into the USC Upstate Athletics Hall of Fame is the third-such honor bestowed upon the Muscatine, Iowa, native. Previously, she was inducted into the Iowa High School Athletics Association Hall of Fame and the Iowa Softball 100 Career Wins Hall of Fame.

After spending nine years in Spartanburg, Middagh returned to Muscatine and has remained active in softball. She assists the pitchers at Muscatine High School and gives pitching lessons to youth softball players in the area while working three different jobs in the area.