Posted: Nov 15, 2012 8:18 PM
COLUMBIA -- The Missouri softball team and Head Coach Ehren Earleywine will welcome six new Tigers to the Missouri Softball program next season. Tori Finucane, Natalie Fleming, Kirsten Mack, Kelli Schkade, Casey Stangel and Jordan Zolman have signed National Letters of Intent to join the Tiger roster in 2013.
"What an awesome class this is," Earleywine said. "We are so proud of each of these six girls, and we look forward to their next four years at Missouri. We knew we had some big shoes to fill, especially with the impending graduation of pitcher Chelsea Thomas. I'm confident that we got the right kids to do that. I would personally like to thank the players and their families for giving us their commitments this year. These girls had the chance to go almost anywhere in the country, but they chose Missouri. And last, I would like to thank our Recruiting Coordinator, Pete D'Amour, who is as responsible for this as anyone. He, once again, has helped us land one of the most competitive classes in the country."
Travel Ball Team: VA Shamrocks and NJ Intensity
Travel Ball Coaches: Head Coach Kevin O'Donnell
High School Team: Bishop O'Connell High School
Parents: Dave and Diane Finucane
High School Coaches: Head Coach Tommy Orndoff
Noteworthy Accolades: Named ESPN Virginia Gatorade Player of the Year...First Team Louisville Slugger/NFCA High School All-American athlete... Named to the Louisville Slugger/NFCA High School All-Region First Team...Named to the First Team MaxPreps High School All-American Team...Recognized by the Washington Post with First Team All-Met honors...Named her High School Varsity Softball MVP...Led her high school team to a 27-1 record, pitching 161 innings last season...Helped the Bishop O'Connell Knights to a WCAC Championship title...set a school record with her 332 strikeouts...Has received first and second academic honors...Is a member of the Principal's List.
Why Tori Chose Mizzou: " When I stepped onto Missouri's campus, I knew that this school was made for me. Missouri's outstanding Journalism program, softball program and coaching staff made my decision a no-brainer."
Chose Mizzou Over:UCLA, Oklahoma State, Michigan, Alabama, Washington, Maryland, Virginia, LSU, UNC
Travel Ball Team: Missouri Stealth
Travel Ball Coaches: Head CoachesAshley Fleming and Greg Logsdon
Hometown: Silex, Mo.
High School Team: Silex High School
Parents: Mark and Susan Fleming
High School Coaches: Head Coach Robert James
Noteworthy Accolades: Recognized for her academic achievements on the Principal's Honor Roll...Has received several EOC Awards...Is a member of the National Honor Society with a 4.29 grade point average...Hit .464 last season, with a .681 slugging percentage...Recorded 32 hits in just 69 at bats last season and had an OBP of .500.
Why Natalie Chose Mizzou: " I chose Mizzou because I liked the softball program and it is close to home."
Chose Mizzou Over: Arkansas, UMSL, Evansville, South Alabama
Travel Ball Team: California LITE
Travel Ball Coaches: Head Coach Pam Newton
Hometown: Riverside, Calif
High School Team: Arlington High School
Parents: Ross and Sarah Mack
High School Coaches: Head Coach Greg Brandt
Noteworthy Accolades: Boasted a .421 batting average over the summer of 2012, hitting 15 home runs, a triple, 14 doubles and 37 singles...Batted .341 in the summer of 2011, recording 16 home runs, two triples, nine doubles and 40 singles...Was invited to participate in the Colorado Fireworks All Star Game...Earned a 4.4 grade point average, ranking fourth in her class...Was given the President's Award for Academic Achievement...Is a member of the California Scholarship Federation...Has Earned High Honors.
Why Kirsten Chose Mizzou: "I chose Mizzou because of the feeling of "home" I got when I was on campus. I also chose it because of the coaches, academics and academic support."
Chose Mizzou Over: Texas, Mississippi St., San Diego State, UNLV
Travel Ball Team: Texas Glory
Travel Ball Coaches: Head Coach Kevin Shelton
Hometown: Albany, Texas
High School Team: Albany High School
Parents: James and Teresa Schkade
High School Coaches: Head Coach Jimmie Fuentes
Noteworthy Accolades: In her junior season she batted .620 and boasted a .968 fielding percentage...Was named District Newcomer of the Year and earned District First Team honors...Recognized as the District MVP after her junior season...is a three-time All-Regional Team selection...Named All-Regional Offensive MVP twice in her career...Earned the title of Sportswriters Player of the Year...Also competes for her high school's track and field team...will have earned 12 letters at the end of her high school career...Is academically ranked in the top ten percent of her class with a 4.0 grade point average...Is a member of the National Honor Society and the National Society of High Honors...Works as the editor of her school newspaper...Was recognized for her journalistic abilities as an All-State Newspaper Writer.
Why Kelli Chose Mizzou: " I chose Mizzou over the other schools due to their winning tradition, family atmosphere, coaches and their journalism school. In short, they're awesome!"
Chose Mizzou Over: Texas Tech, Syracuse, Alabama
Travel Ball Team: So Cal Explosion
Travel Ball Coaches: Head Coach Bret Denio
Hometown: Coeur d'Alene, Idaho
High School Team: Lake City High School
Parents: Chris and Debi Stangel
High School Coaches: Head Coach Laura Tolzmann
Noteworthy Accolades: Two-time Gatorade Player of the Year...Two-time High School All-American athlete... Three-time Inland Empire League Player of the Year...Three-time All-State selection...Named Northwest Athletics Female Athlete of the Year...Holds several school records including her 18 doubles, 1.235 slugging percentage, .649 OBP and 0.32 ERA...Also holds her high school's strikeout record with 285 in her career and 18 per game...Is a three-year member of the National Honor Society...Received the Presidential Academic Award.
Why Casey Chose Mizzou: " The second I stepped on campus I knew that I was meant to be a tiger. The coaching staff is second to none, the facilities are top of the line, and it is a program that not only teaches you to be a great player, but a great person as well. There is no other school in the country that can compare, and there is no other place that can support me in fulfilling my dream of a national championship better than Mizzou."
Chose Mizzou Over: Cal Berkeley, Stanford, UCLA, Oklahoma, Washington, Arizona State, LSU, Texas
Travel Ball Team: Nationals Gold and Birmingham Thunderbolts
Travel Ball Coaches: Head Coaches Larry Brzezinski and Corey Miller also Richard Shea
High School Team: Southland High School
Parents: Ritchard and Kathy Zolman
High School Coaches: Head Coach Johnny McMinn
Noteworthy Accolades: Was voted to the All-Conference First Team for three consecutive years...Three-time All-Conference Softball Player of the Year Award winner...Three-time MVP and Best Offensive Player Award winner...Received All-Conference Honors for her talents on the volleyball court four years in a row...Twice received the Best Athlete Award from her high school...Batted .454 last summer and knocked out six home runs...Tallied 18 RBI for her travel team last season...Helped the Southland High School Rebels to a 15-0 record in her freshman season, and also led the team to three conference championships...Is a member of the National Honor Society...Represents her school as Student Council President...Is a member of the Beta Club.
Why Jordan Chose Mizzou: " I chose Mizzou because They have an amazing softball program and a great university. "
Chose Mizzou Over: Arkansas, Florida, Colorado State