Texas Tech Softball Inks 10 Signees During Fall Period
Shanon Hays had 10 future student-athletes sign with Texas Tech during the fall period.
Nov. 21, 2011
LUBBOCK, Texas - Coming off two-straight postseason appearances, Texas Tech continued to build for the future Monday with one of the largest softball classes in school history as 10 future student-athletes signed national letters of intent with the program during the fall signing period.
With eight seniors on its 2012 roster, Tech went out and signed a diverse class that ranges from players in the state of Texas to the west coast and even Mississippi.
The class was also the largest in the tenure of Shanon Hays, giving the third-year head coach plenty of options next fall when the Red Raiders boast several new faces.
"This was, in my mind, our first real recruiting class at Texas Tech," Hays said. "The way college softball recruiting is done now, most of your players are committing between their sophomore and junior year of high school. Knowing that, I never dreamed we would have such a great class this early."
With the departure of most of its position players, Tech signed eight athletes who could play in the field to go along with four pitching prospects, including Ocean Springs, Miss. native Gretchen Aucoin who should see time at the corner infield spots while most notably helping boost Tech's pitching staff in the circle.
Hays and staff returned to the junior college ranks one time this year to sign Olive Naotala from nearby Howard College. The Oceanside, Calif. native hit .469 last year with 22 home runs, 94 RBI, 20 doubles, and 76 runs scores, all team highs, and should immediately help fill a role for Tech up the middle.
"This class helps tremendously with the amount of seniors we will lose next year," Hays said. "So many players in this class can do so many things. Most importantly, they are all solid offensive players. That's something we try to base our program around. We've also been waiting for additional pitching, and this class will help solidify us in the circle as well."
The 2012 version of the Texas Tech softball program will begin its season Feb. 9-11 at the Arizona State Kajikawa Classic. A complete schedule will be released in the next week.
2011 TEXAS TECH SIGNING CLASS