Story by Mark McFarland, Assistant Sports Editor
Six Murray State athletic teams added 27 student-athletes to their teams this past week, with the baseball team adding 13 players alone.
Head Coach Kevin Moulder and the coaching staff were able to add 13 players, five of whom come from the St. Louis area, for the upcoming 2017 season.
This class is Moulder’s second class since taking over the head coaching job last season. Moulder said last year he focused on getting guys who would be able to contribute right away, but this year he wanted to go after the younger guys.
“This class focused more on need and we definitely focused on the high school players,” Moulder said.
The 13 student athletes that will be joining the team are:
- Keegan Breese, 5’11”, 160 pound right-handed pitcher and infielder from Paducah, Kentucky.
- Luke Brown, 5’10”, 150 pound left-handed pitcher from Princeton, Kentucky.
- Hunter Childress, 5’10”, 160 pound infielder from Bardstown, Kentucky.
- Bryan Chilton, 5’-1” 185 pound catcher from Hopkinsville, Kentucky.
- Braydon Cook, 6’1” 180 pound right-handed pitcher from O’Fallon, Missouri.
- Andrew Hayden, 6’4”, 185 pound left-handed pitcher from Owensboro, Kentucky.
- Tyler Horsley, 6’1”, 190 pound right-handed pitcher from Louisville, Kentucky.
- Trevor McMurray, 6’2”, 180 pound right-handed pitcher from Wildwood, Missouri.
- Bobby Pennington, 6’4”, 210 pound right-handed pitcher from Park Ridge, Illinois. Pennington is the only junior-college transfer in the class.
- Justin Perkins, 6’2” 220 pound infielder and right-handed pitcher from Saint Charles, Missouri.
- Ryan Perkins, 6’2”, 210 pound outfielder from Saint Charles, Missouri.
- Jake Slunder, 6’1”, 170 pound outfielder from Cabot, Arkansas.
- Alec Whaley, 6’2”, 205 pound right-handed pitcher from O’Fallon, Missouri.
Head Coach Kara Amundson is bringing five new student-athletes to campus in her 2017 class. Amundson said that a few key players are graduating this year so she needed to go out try to find people who could fill their shoes.
“The players that we are bringing in have a lot of different tools that we’re trying to fill,” she said. “Kids with speed, kids with power, obviously a pitcher we are bringing in. So we are bringing in a lot of different skill in this class, which I’m pretty excited about.”
The five new signees are; Ellison Barrett, pitcher from Florence, Alabama. Kristen Bialek, utility player from Downers Grove, Illinois. Jenny Homann, utility player from Freeburg, Illinois. Lexi Jones, infielder from Eldersburg, Maryland, she is also the programs first recruit from Maryland. Rounding out the class is Kaylee Ranburger, outfielder from Owensboro, Kentucky.
Head Coach Matt McMahon has signed three players for the 2016-2017 season. McMahon said that they needed to sign guys who could come in and contribute.
“We need to sign two athletic frontcourt guys and we were able to do that with Gilbert Thomas and Jalen Dupree,” he said. “And with the loss of Jeffery Moss to graduation we also needed a guard with some size and basketball I.Q. and also someone who can shoot the ball from the perimeter and we got that with Dondre Griffin.”
The signees are: Jalen Dupree, 6’8”, forward from Cordova, Tennessee. Dondre Griffin, 6’4”, guard from Raleigh, North Carolina. Gilbert Thomas, 6’6”, forward from Houston, Texas.
Jessica Richards, 6’2”, post player from Barrie, Ontario, Canada. She played for Innsdale High School where she was awarded co-MVP for the past three seasons; she averaged 18.7 points per game, according to goracers.com.
Shelby Huber from Columbus, Georgia. He shot at Northside High School, where in his junior year helped bring the school its first state championship in eight years, according to goracers.com.
Meike Drewell from Austin, Texas. She is a member of the Buckhorn Shooting Club in Austin, Texas. She also placed third in the Texas Junior Olympic qualifier in her junior year, according to goracers.com.
Megan Lindsay, 5’11”, outside hitter from Mascoutah, Illinois. She played at Mascoutah High School where she holds the career record for kills with 900 and the single season record with 298, according to goracers.com.
Rachel Giustino, 5’10” outside hitter from Algonquin, Illinois. She currently plays at Marian Central Catholic High School where holds the single season record for kills with 320 and has 316 so far this season, and she also has the career school record for kills with 833, according to goracers.com.
Courtney Radle 5’10”, setter from St. Louis. She currently plays for Francis Howell High School where she was named first team all-region this year, according to goracers.com.