Two pitchers are among the five transfers who have joined Missouri Southern’s softball program, coach Hallie Blackney announced Wednesday.
Pitchers Abbey Gann and Bailey Lacy combined to win 34 games in the last two seasons in junior college. Of course, their 2020 campaigns were abbreviated by COVID-19.
Also joining the Lions are catchers Ashlynn Williams and Shandria Jackson and infielder Leighton Withers.
“In addition to our returners, this 2020 class is a solid group who will help continue to establish a culture of excellence at MSSU,” Blackney said in a release.
After a record-setting career at West Plains High School, Gann went 18-4 and had four saves in two season at Three Rivers College in Poplar Bluff, Missouri.
She had 23 starts among 29 appearances. She struck out 187 batters in 138 innings and compiled a 2.64 earned run average, earning all-Region 16 honors.
At West Plains, Gann was a four-year starter for the Zizzers and set school career records for victories (72) and strikeouts (608). She was a four-time all-conference and all-district selection and two-time all-state pick.
Gann, the daughter of Gary and Penny Gann, plans to major in clinical psychology.
Lacy was 16-5 and earned three saves at Highland (Kan.) Community College.
She appeared in 25 games (19 starts) and had 66 strikeouts and a 3.75 ERA in 115.2 innings. She helped Highland to a top-6 finish in the 2019 NJCAA Division II Tournament.
Lacy is a graduate of Thomas More Prep in Hays, Kansas, where she helped the Monarchs to three regional championships.
Lacy, the daughter of Brian and Kerri Lacy, plans to major in elementary education.
Williams, from Oklahoma City, batted .294 the last two seasons for the Kansas City (formerly UMKC) Roos.
She was an all-state catcher at Midwest City High School and a four-time all-conference player. She was named the Class 6A-2 defensive player of the year in 2016.
Williams, the daughter of Wes and Jojo Williams, was valedictorian of her high school class.
Jackson, from Vian, Oklahoma, played the last two seasons at Crowder. As a freshman she helped the Lady ‘Riders to the Region 16 championships and was named to the region’s all-tournament team.
At Vian, Jackson played basketball and participated in track and field in addition to softball. She was first team all-league in softball and her class valedictorian.
Jackson, the daughter of Tania Choate, plans to major in health care administration.
Withers played the last two seasons at Ouachita Baptist and started in 49 of the 42 games, batting .227 with nine doubles and seven home runs among her 29 hits. She scored 25 runs and had 26 runs batted in.
One of her home runs came in the 2019 Great American Conference Tournament, an eighth-inning shot that lifted the Tigers to a 5-4 victory over top-seeded Southern Arkansas.
This season Withers batted .302 in 21 games with three home runs and five RBI.
At Harmony Grove High School in Benton, Arkansas, Withers batted .480 for her career with 165 hits, 26 homers, 135 RBI and 142 runs scored. She helped the Cardinals win three Class 3A-5 district titles and three state semifinal appearances, spiced by the 2018 state title.
Withers, the daughter of Jennifer and Chad Withers, plans to major in business administration and marketing.