Incoming Freshmen Experiencing Summer Tournament Success
Thursday, August 7, 2008

Three members of Valparaiso softball’s incoming freshmen class have tasted success at ASA national tournaments this summer, highlighted by a national championship won by Alex LaGesse of the Lemont Rockers DD.

LaGesse, a high school standout at Beecher (Ill.) and two-time NWI Times Illinois Player of the Year, helped lead the Rockers to the ASA 18U national championship last week.  LaGesse took the circle for the Rockers in the championship game and shut down the Minnesota Sting Elite, allowing just one unearned run and scattering six hits to earn the complete-game 5-1 victory.

LaGesse was not the only incoming Crusader freshman to play for a top-ten team at the 18U national championship, however.  Samantha McGee, who played her high school softball at Bloomington Jefferson (Minn.) and was named the Minneapolis-St. Paul Star Tribune Scholar-Athlete of the Year, played for the Minnesota Blizzard, which went 5-2 at the tournament to finish tied for seventh place.

Meanwhile, another incoming Crusader is currently playing in the 2008 ASA 18U Gold national championship.  Sara Strickland, an all-state honoree out of Horizon (Ariz.), plays for the AZ Hotshots Gold team, which has won its first two games at the tournament to advance to the round of 16 in the winner’s bracket.  The tournament runs through Sunday, and updates on the success of Strickland and her team can be found at