Monday, June 17, 2013

Harper Softball Signs 14 Players for 2014 Season

Softball: Recruit Signing Day Two
Some of the newest Hawks shortly after signing their NJCAA Letters of Intent.
PALATINE, Ill. – Harper College couldn't field a softball team for the spring 2012 season, but since that time, head coach Cray Allen has begun to rebuild the program. Allen and his coaching staff held two signing days Friday, June 14 and Monday, June 17 to welcome in 14 players to a revitalized Hawks program on the rise.

"We're excited about our first official recruiting class at Harper," Allen said. "We have some dedicated kids with some high softball IQ that are willing to take the program to the next level."

Nine players signed their NJCAA Letters of Intent on the first day of signing: Kayleigh Burnitz (Fremd), Jess DuBrock (East Leyden), Alexis Filler (Hoffman Estates), Jaz Skor (Barrington), Anna Kawka (East Leyden), Ashley Packard (Buffalo Grove), Tory Brewer (West Washington High School (Indiana)),  Ashley Alicea (Huntley) and Sam Cummings (Lake Park).

Burnitz was a three-sport athlete at Fremd, earning All-Conference honors in bowling for two consecutive years (2011-12) and also lettering in softball and golf. Burnitz will be playing outfield for Harper. DuBrock, a National Honor Society member, received a Coaches Award while at East Leyden High School, and her team was ranked No. 41 in the nation. DuBrock primarily played second base for the Hawks in the spring of 2013 and appeared in 18 games.

Filler was her team's offensive MVP in 2012 at Hoffman Estates High School. She served as Harper's primary catcher in 2013 and played in 23 of the team's 24 games. Skor primarily played shortstop and served as the second pitcher for the Hawks in 2013. She led the team in hitting with a .328 average and ranked at the top of several offensive categories, including hits (21), triples (4), runs (12) and OPS (.850).

Kawka will be playing outfield for the Hawks in 2014. A two-sport athlete in high school (softball and gymnastics), Kawka was in Italian Honor Society and was also an honor roll student at East Leyden. She was also on the East Leyden team that was ranked in the top 50 nationally. Packard earned Team MVP honors in 2011 and 2012 on her track and field team and was on the All-Academic Team for three years at Buffalo Grove High School. She played the 2012-13 season for the Harper women's basketball team and will be a utility player for the Hawks.

Brewer, who is a middle infielder and outfielder, was a two-time All-County (2011-12) and two-time All-Conference Patoka Lakes Athletic Conference player (2011-12) for West Washington High School in Campbellsburg, Ind.  Alicea was a star on the track and field team at Huntley High School and can play multiple positions on the diamond.

Cummings will play first base and catcher for the Hawks. She was her team's offensive MVP for two years at Lake Park High School and also was named All-Conference twice (2011-12).

Five players signed their NJCAA Letters of Intent on the second day of signing: Ashley Webster (Wilmot High School (Wisconsin)), Kaitlyn Keegan (Elk Grove), Tori Liewergen (Elk Grove), Lindsay Cannon (McHenry) and Beth Petrunich (McHenry).

Webster is a middle infielder who was a four-year varsity softball letter winner at Wilmot High School in Salem, Wis. Keegan played primarily third base for the Hawks this past season. She had a strong day at the plate in the Hawks' final two games of the season at Madison College, going 4-for-6 with an RBI.

Liewergen, a pitcher and utility player, was an All-Area selection in 2012 at Elk Grove and was an All-Academic senior athlete. A two-sport athlete who also played tennis in high school, Liewergen is transferring from Lake Forest College, where she spent her first year of college.

Cannon was an outfielder for a McHenry High School team that won back-to-back regional championships in 2012 and 2013. Her high school teammate Beth Petrunich, a middle infielder, was also a member of those championship teams. Petrunich was in National Honor Society and was a high honor roll student for four years, an All-Conference academic athlete and her travel team's defensive MVP.

"We have some star pitchers and a good balance of speed, power and athletic ability. It should be an exciting year," said assistant coach Lynsey Ciezki. 

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