BRANTLEY, Ala. -- Mississippi State softball player Alex Wilcox, who inspired the softball community with her courageous battle with ovarian cancer, passed away in her hometown of Brantley, Ala., on Monday evening. She was 18.
"Alex Wilcox will always be remembered by her smile," MSU softball head coach Vann Stuedeman said. "The bravest, most courageous young lady I have ever known went through the toughest battle with a smile on her face every day. The grace and beauty that she put forward while suffering this horrific disease was truly remarkable and nothing short of heroic. Our hearts are broken for her family and all of those that loved her so dearly. The Mississippi State softball family will strive to humbly honor her warrior mentality and faith-filled heart. She will be forever missed."
"Tonight with heavy hearts we are saddened by the loss of one of our very own in Alex Wilcox," MSU Director of Athletics John Cohen said. "Alex always had a smile on her face and a positive attitude. Her inspirational battle taught us that indeed no one fights alone. We will never forget her presence in the dugout, in the classroom and in the community. Our thoughts and prayers are with Alex, her family, her teammates, her friends and her Mississippi State family."
Diagnosed with ovarian cancer in 2015, Wilcox defied the odds and continued to play softball throughout her treatments and help lead Brantley High School to multiple state championships. Wilcox signed with the Bulldogs in 2016.
Over her freshman campaign, Wilcox continued her fight with cancer while continuing to pursue her dreams of playing collegiate softball. She sparkled during the fall season, displaying her ability at the plate with home run power.
Despite being in the midst of chemotherapy treatments, Wilcox appeared in eight contests with three starts over her freshman season. She recorded three hits in her 15 at bats, including her first collegiate hit against UMass Lowell in March. Balancing a full academic course load, Wilcox was named to the SEC Honor Roll this spring.
Mississippi State softball rallied around Wilcox throughout the 2018 season with its "No One Fights Alone" campaign as the program wore teal uniforms during midweek contests to spread awareness for ovarian cancer and Wilcox's fight. Wilcox's constant positivity and determination throughout her battle drew support and praise from legends in the softball community like Olympians Michele Smith and Jessica Mendoza.
The campaign sparked fire as teams across the Southeastern Conference and the country rallied around Wilcox by wearing teal and sending messages of love and support. For their selfless efforts to support, all 13 SEC softball programs were awarded the league's Sportsmanship Award earlier this month.
Funeral arrangements are pending.