SYRACUSE – Bethel College is stocking up on Kosciusko County softball talent.
The Pilots signed another local softball player Tuesday afternoon, inking Wawasee High School senior standout Hannah Haines to continue her career in Mishawaka.
Hannah has had quite a career already on the softball diamonds at Wawasee. As junior, Haines clubbed five home runs – all in conference games – including a trifecta against Northridge in a key Northern Lakes Conference win. On the year, Haines hit .302 with an OBP of .430, scored 24 runs and drove in 13. Of her 19 hits, seven went for extra bases. Haines hit .289 as a sophomore with nine runs scored and seven runs driven in.
Haines played in one varsity game as a freshman, driving in a run on her only hit. But in the JV ranks, Haines has a footnote in the Wawasee record books, going 25-0 as a freshman pitcher with 219 strikeouts and 10 shutouts for a team that went undefeated. Haines has only pitched in two varsity games, largely playing first base and outfield.
As a junior, Haines earned All-NLC Honorable Mention honors and was part of the 2015 and 2016 NLC champion teams and the 2014 sectional champions. Haines also earned the “Play of the Game” award as a freshman in softball and the “Warrior Way” award for basketball as a junior, playing basketball all four years at Wawasee.
In the classroom, Haines is pulling an 11.61 GPA (on a 12 scale) and is ranked No. 6 in her class of 235. At Bethel, Haines plans on studying exercise science with a focus on physical therapy.
“I just love to play, so wherever I play in the field is fine with me,” said Haines Tuesday afternoon, who has played all over the field in her three years with the Warriors. “I’ll work hard wherever they need me to play at Bethel.
“One of the biggest fears I had about going to college is not knowing anyone or being comfortable in my surroundings,” continued Haines. “I really felt comfortable with the Bethel team and I do know a lot of the girls that will be on the team next year, which will help me adapt. I’m looking forward to the challenge of playing softball in college, and having some familiar faces there with me will help a lot.”
“The opportunity to have Hannah on our team is going to make a huge difference no matter where she plays,” said Bethel College head softball coach Scott Reese. “She is a tremendous person and tremendous athlete, and comes from a great family. I was so excited that she decided that Bethel was where she wanted to be. I feel like she is a great fit for all of us.
“She is going to be a solid hitter and is pretty consistent at the plate. She can play outfield and infield, having played a lot of first, and I am planning on hopefully using her in the circle it at all possible. I think there are a lot of ways she can benefit us and I hope Bethel can benefit her as well.”
Reese has signed three players from Kosciusko County this offseason, also adding Warsaw shortstop Abby Glass and Tippecanoe Valley catcher Katie Prater to the incoming class.