Valparaiso University softball coach Randy Schneider has announced that three players signed National Letters of Intent to play for the Crusaders during the early signing period.
Joining the Brown and Gold for the 2006 season are pitcher Stephanie Kelly, infielder Karen Korb, and outfielder Ashley Wolter.
Kelly, a native of Plainfield, Ill., struck out 273 hitters in 169 innings of work for Plainfield High School. A three-time All-City selection, she also earned Player of the Year honors. She posted double-digit strikeout performances 20 times last season, while opponents hit just .105 against her. Kelly finished with a 19-6 record and a 0.46 earned run average.
?Stephanie will make an immediate impact with our pitching staff," Schneider said. ?She is a strong lefty that gives our staff a new look. She is an outstanding student-athlete understands hard work on and off the field."
Korb was the starting shortstop for Lutheran High School, the 2004 Class A champions in Indiana. A native of Indianapolis, Ind., she was a career .330 hitter and earned All-Conference honors for the Saints.
?We searched for an outstanding student-athlete that has been in championship situations and Karen fits the bill," Schneider commented. ?She is a multi-sport athlete who possesses all we are looking for in a Valpo softball player."
Wolter has been a two-time First Team All-State selection in Iowa for Denver High School. The Denver, Iowa native ranks near the top of the state's all-time career charts for both triples and homeruns.
?She is a powerful lefty that can run and throw, and brings a career batting average of over .400 to Valpo," said Schneider. ?She also has a championship attitude that will make a great addition to the Crusader softball program."