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Ducks Ink Another Standout Softball Signee Class – – The University of Oregon Official Athletics Web Site

EUGENE – The University of Oregon softball team announced another impressive signing class with the addition of six talented recruits that signed National Letters of Intent the past week. “We’re excited to welcome another group of signees that adds depth at all positions, especially up the middle, which was a key area for us in recruiting this year,” Oregon head coach Mike White said. “Many of them will have a chance to challenge for starting roles immediately, which is important in helping us continue to raise our level and field the best team possible.” The newcomer group includes two utility players, one pitcher, one catcher, one infielder and one outfielder (and their names follow alphabetically): – Koral Costa, UT, RH-RT, 5-5, San Pedro, Calif., San Pedro HS (So Cal Firecrackers Club) – Cheridan Hawkins, P, LH-LT, 5-10, Anderson, Calif., Anderson HS (Sorcerors Gold (Mumma))) – Janelle Lindvall, C, RH-RT, 5-10, Stevenson Ranch, Calif., West Ranch HS (So Cal Firecrackers) – Danica Mercado, IF, LH-RT, 5-4, Temecula, Calif., Great Oak HS (So Cal Athletics) – Karine Shaver, IF, LH-RT, RT, 5-4, Waipahu, Hawai’i, Kamehameha HS (Guava Jam Black) – Andrinae White, OF, RH-RT, 5-5, Fairfield, Calif., St. Patrick-St. Vincent HS (Sorcerors Gold (Mumma)) The players will arrive as freshmen next fall and hope to repeat the same first-year success that last year’s freshman quartet achieved in 2011. Sophomore infielder Courtney Ceo and catcher Alexa Peterson. Both were tabbed to the All-Region Second Team and All-Pac-10 Freshman Team, and the latter player was voted the team’s Defensive MVP. Utility player Kailee Cuico sports the team’s third-best home run:at-bat ratio among returnees (1:16:4 / 7 HR, 115 AB) from ‘11, and sophomore outfielder Lauren Kotz was the team’s most called-upon pinch-runner. Signee profiles and comments from White about each player follow: – Koral Costa, UT, RH-RT, 5-5, San Pedro, Calif., San Pedro HS (So Cal Firecrackers) A L.A. City Section and Marine-League First-Team Choice as a sophomore and junior, she was also an All-League Second-Team choice as a freshman. She helped her team to three Marine League titles (2009-11) and an L.A. city section title (2009). On the summer club circuit, her Firecrackers team placed second in the 2011 Premier Girls Fastpitch tournament, and took first in the Colorado Fireworks and Canadian Open tournaments in both 2010 and ’11. Off the diamond, she played sweeper for the three-time league soccer champions (2009-11). Mike White said, “Koral has a strong, consistent bat and power to the gaps. She has played second base and the outfield, so her versatility gives us depth in many areas. She has played with a great club team, which has raised her game mentally.” – Cheridan Hawkins, P, LH-LT, 5-10, Anderson, Calif., Anderson HS (Sorcerors Gold  (Mumma))) As a junior, the Under Armour All-American logged a section record 510 strikeouts, 0.79 ERA, 19 shutouts and 35 complete games in her 221 innings. At the plate, she hit .471, thanks to her 10 doubles, six triples and homer. As a junior, she was tabbed the Northern Athletic League MVP and Northern Section CIF Pitcher of the Year after she led the state and ranked second nationally in strikeouts. Among other notable 2011 honors, the Louisville Slugger/NFCA All-America First-Team Pitcher also received ESPN Rise honors for the California medium-sized school division and national underclassman first team, and was the MaxPreps Small Schools Player of the Year. Her squad went 31-4 last spring and won league and section titles. She was also a Northern Athletic All-League choice as a freshman and sophomore in 2009 and ’10. In club action, her Strike Zone Elite club placed fifth in the 2011 Premier National Fastpitch Tournament in Huntington Beach, Calif. Mike White said, “Cheridan is a really hard worker, and adding a left-hander who can throw a riseball will complement our pitching staff . She is from Northern California – not far from Jess Moore’s hometown – and broke the state strikeout record. She’s now playing for one of the top Junior Olympic programs – the Sorcerors out of Concord, Calif. – so it will be exciting to see her continue to mature.” – Janelle Lindvall, C, RH-RT, 5-10, Stevenson Ranch, Calif., West Ranch HS (So Cal Firecrackers) The returning All-California Second-Team pick is also a three-time, first-team All-Santa Clarita Valley choice and two-time All-League pick at catcher. Also a Daily News All-Area honoree, she has helped her team advance to the CIF Division Playoffs Second Round. A key part of year’s Premier Girls Fastpitch Tournament runners-up, her Worth Firecrackers squad won the Colorado Fireworks and Canada Cup tournaments the past two years, the same Colorado event in 2009 and the ASA Gold Nationals in 2009. Mike White said, “Many think Janelle is one of the top high school catchers in her class, and we certainly agree. Her arm is great, and she has a glove-to-glove throwing time in the low 1.70-second range to second base. She is great at handling pitchers and directing the infield, and will boost a key area.” – Danica Mercado, IF, LH-RT, 5-4, Temecula, Calif., Great Oak HS (So Cal Athletics) The three-year letterwinner at second base was an All-State pick in 2011 and an All-League choice in 2010 and ’11. As a junior, she paced the team in hitting .522 (47H, 5 2B, 2 3B, 2 HR), and swiped 23 stolen bases. Likewise, as a sophomore she topped the squad in batting (.476-40H, 6 2B, 3 3B, 2 HR) and stolen bases (16). Her squad has won Southern Section and Southwestern League titles. Her So Cal Athletics club team won the 2011 18U Premier Girls Fastpitch tournament, and the 2010 ESPN Rise National Tournament. Earlier in her club career, her Victory USA club was the 2009 14U ASA National Champion, ’08 National Runner-up, and ’07 12U ASA National Champions. Mike White said, “Danica is a gritty, determined player who gives her all. She had the game-winning base hit in the PGF tourney championship which isn’t surprising. She loves being in crucial situations and wants to make the play. She has above average speed and has great infield experience, yet would play anywhere to help the team.” -  Karine Shaver, IF, RH-RT, 5-4, Waipahu, Hawai’i, Kamehameha HS (Guava Jam Black) As a junior, the shortstop led her team in RBI (21), extra-base hits (12) and fielding (.966) in her 21 games. Last summer in ASA play, she hit .536 and had 14 RBI’s in her nine games, and has played club ball for Guava Jam Black and Pacific Pride. Mike White said, “When we saw Karine at one of our camps, we were impressed with how slick of a fielder she is. She can hit to all fields, has good speed, and could play middle infield or outfield for us. She is already familiar with the campus since her brother is a student here, so she is really excited to be a Duck.”       – Andrinae White, OF, RH-RT, 5-5, Fairfield, Calif., St. Patrick-St. Vincent HS (Sorcerors Gold (Mumma))) A two-year outfield letterwinner, she helped her team go undefeated in 2011 en route to the BSAL league title, and SCAC League Championships in 2009 and ’10. A two-time All-League Honorable Mention, she has also played on one of the top nation’s top club teams. Her Sorcerers 18U and 16U squads posted notable finishes in the 2009 ASA Nationals and ESPN Premier Championships in 2010 (fifth) and ’11 (17th) and Nike Faster to First Tournaments (eighth-2009, ’10). Mike White said, “Andrinae is a solid all-around player that has a good arm and good speed from the right side of the plate. She is another player from one of the top club teams in the nation in the Sorcerors. She missed most of last summer with an injury and will likely surprise a lot of people this year as a senior.”   This week, White and the Ducks are currently in the heart of the individual practice sessions in the final weeks of the fall quarter. After they return in January from winter break, the resume team practice in anticipation of a busy first month of action that includes three February tournaments in Tempe, Ariz. (Kajikawa Classic, 2/10-12), Palm Springs, Calif., (Cathedral City Classic, 2/23-26) and Orlando, Fla. (Disney Tournament, 3/1-4). In March, the Ducks play one last tourney in Fresno, Calif. (Bayer Cropscience Classic, 3/9-11) before hosting returning World Series advancer in Alabama in its home opener in Eugene (Tue., March 13)  Closer to home this winter, area high school players can also sign-up for the Winter All-Skills Camp (December 29), and the Winter Elite Camp (January 27-29) at the CAMPS link at the top of the home page. Information is also available at the website about a special Oregon Satellite Camps that will be held in Orange, Calif. (12/20-22) and Anaheim, Calif. (12/29). For the two-day camp at El Modena High School, pitcher and catcher instruction will be emphasized the first day and defense and offense the last two days. The latter one-day pitching camp will be held at the Sports Training Complex at 1590 South Sinclair Street, and is limited to 15 participants. – –

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