ST. LOUIS – Saint Louis head softball coach Christy Connoyer has announced the signing of three student-athletes to National Letters of Intent to attend the University and play for the Billikens beginning next fall.
The new Billikens are catcher Alyssa Chavez (Fishers, Ind./Fishers H.S.), outfielder Kat Lane (Overland Park, Kan./Saint Thomas Aquinas H.S.) and infielder Sadie Wise (Kirkwood, Mo./Kirkwood H.S.).
“We’re very excited to have three quality student-athletes join the Billiken softball program,” Connoyer said. “A combination of high-level experience and overall athletic ability makes this an exciting class.
“All three student-athletes have a passion for softball and love to compete,” Connoyer said. “They also are talented in the classroom and realize the importance and value of a SLU education.”
Chavez, who will play her fourth prep season this spring, earned All-Conference and All-County honors in each of her first three campaigns. A Sportsmanship Player of the Year and two-year team captain, she owns a .377 batting average and also garnered Defensive Player of the Year accolades twice.
Chavez set a Fishers record for career runs scored and has equaled the school mark for career triples. She played with the St. Louis Esprit-Huecker travel team, and she recently joined the Lids Indiana Dreams-Montgomery travel squad. Chavez is a member of National Honor Society and will graduate with honors.
“Alyssa’s confident presence behind the plate adds composure to a defense and strengthens a pitching staff,” Connoyer said. “Her catching skills are sharp, smooth and efficient, and she has outstanding experience catching top Division I pitchers during the summer. Alyssa is a solid power threat at the plate and will help us in all facets of our offense.”
Lane, who also has one season of high school softball remaining, collected first-team All-State plaudits as a sophomore and junior and second-team All-State recognition as a freshman. She was named to the All-Conference first team all three years and to the Kansas City Star All-Metro squad the past two seasons. Lane also was tabbed team Most Valuable Player as a sophomore and junior and Defensive Player of the Year a season ago.
A .520 hitter, Lane set Saint Thomas Aquinas season records of 43 hits, a .625 batting average with runners in scoring position and 46 stolen bases. She batted .495 with her travel team, KC Peppers-Wallace. Lane is a National Honor Society member and a three-year honor roll student.
“Kat is a competitor with great passion for the game,” Connoyer said. “Speed and quickness complement her defensive reads, which are significant skills of a quality outfielder. She is an offensive spark and can drive the ball to all parts of the field, putting pressure on the defense in every at-bat. Kat is a true student of the game, and I look forward to watching her grow throughout her collegiate career.”
Wise, a three-year Kirkwood team captain, concluded her high school career this fall with a four-year batting average of .515. She was selected to the All-State first team the past two seasons and was chosen the 2016 Suburban XII South Player of the Year. Wise earned first-team All-Conference, All-District and All-Region laurels all four years, was a two-time St. Louis Post-Dispatch All-Metro choice and was conference Newcomer of the Year in 2013.
Wise, who batted .618 as a senior, set a state record for career doubles as well as school marks for hits and RBIs. She turned in a .405 batting mark for the 2016 St. Louis Chaos travel team that placed seventh in the 18U ASA Junior Olympic Cup, and she hit .433 for the Chaos in 2015. Wise was a 2016 Missouri/Illinois ASA All-Star and a 2014 Louisville Slugger IDT All-Star.
Also the captain of Kirkwood’s track and field team, Wise holds the school record in the javelin throw. She is a three-time Academic All-State honoree, an honor roll student, a National Honor Society member and recipient of the African-American Achievement Award.“Sadie is a positive force on the field, she has a remarkable attitude, and she loves to compete,” Connoyer said. “She is steady, consistent and sound in her defense. She can drive the ball gap-to-gap and has grown into a powerful hitter throughout her career. Sadie’s work ethic, coupled with a high level of experience, will transition well to the college game.”