Several former Monroe County high school baseball and softball standouts recently completed their seasons at various levels of the college ranks.
Among those who played NCAA Division I baseball were Jordan McFarland at Arkansas, Erik Kaiser at Vanderbilt, Cameron Touchette at Kent State, Tyler McAlister at Missouri State, Cole Milam at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville and Quinten Albrecht at Wichita State.
McFarland, a Waterloo High School graduate, hit .238 with two home runs and 12 RBIs in 24 games as a junior. McFarland recently entered the NCAA transfer portal in hopes that he can play elsewhere for his senior season. “There just wasn’t a spot for him to fill in the loaded Arkansas lineup,” his uncle, Kevin McFarland, said. “I’m not sure where he is leaning at this moment but I know his phone has been ringing often since he declared his transfer option.”
Kaiser, a 6-foot-5 sophomore righty from Waterloo, made one start for the Commodores, pitching three innings with four strikeouts and four runs allowed.
Touchette, a left-handed hitting outfielder from Columbia, earned second team All-MAC honors after hitting .345 with 27 RBIs, 19 stolen bases and a .445 on base percentage in 42 games as a junior following a successful junior college baseball career at John A. Logan.
McAlister, a 6-foot-5 righty from Waterloo, tore his labrum and missed his entire junior season.
Milam, a 6-foot-4 righty from Waterloo, made 18 relief appearances as a junior with a 1-4 record and 7.20 ERA, 54 strikeouts and three saves.
Albrecht, a catcher from Waterloo, was redshirted this season and hopes to make an impact as a sophomore.
At the NCAA Division II level, Gibault graduate Chandler Purcell turned in a stellar senior season at Quincy University. He hit .297 in 51 games with nine home runs, 40 RBIs and 41 runs.
A fellow Gibault alumnus, Tyler Brinkmann, went 1-for-2 with an RBI and run scored in limited play as an outfielder at Lindenwood University-St. Charles. His teammate is Kyle Hentis of Red Bud, who went 3-5 with a 3.47 ERA in 85-plus innings pitched.
Brennen van Breusegen of Columbia did not see the field his freshman season at the University of Central Missouri.
Andrew Hoguet, also of Columbia, made five appearances his junior season, pitching four-plus innings with three strikeout and an 8.31 ERA.
Following a successful junior college career at Southwestern Illinois College, Keegan Baxmeyer turned in a strong season at Missouri S&T. He hit .257 with three home runs, 18 RBIs and 22 runs in 32 games as a junior.
At the NCAA Division III level, freshman infielder Mitch Daniels of Columbia appeared in one game at Webster University, going 0-for-1.
At the NAIA level, Gibault grad Collin Kessler pitched at William Woods University. The 6-foot-5 righty went 0-0 in five appearances (one start) totaling nine innings and had a 6.00 ERA.
Two locals performed well at SWIC. Three-sport standout Trevor Davis, a Gibault grad, hit .313 in 36 games with 10 doubles, 22 RBIs and 20 runs and was 2-1 in seven appearances (three starts) with a 4.86 ERA on the mound. Davis will play both baseball and basketball at Monmouth College.
Valmeyer grad Cole Juelfs hit .226 with 15 RBIs and 24 runs and was 0-1 in six appearances totaling eight innings and a 7.88 ERA as a freshman at SWIC.
Another former Pirate, infielder Easton Wallace, hit .294 in 34 games at Kaskaskia College with 27 RBIs, 22 runs and three home runs as a sophomore. Wallace is undecided on where to play next season, with McKendree University a possibility.
There are also several locals starring in softball this spring.
Division I players are Megan Brown at Southern Illinois University Carbondale, Keeler van Breusegen at Bradley, Kelly Metter at Missouri State, Taryn Pena at Drake and Chelsy Pena and Rachael Donald at Southeast Missouri State University.
Brown, a utility player from Dupo, hit .289 with five home runs, 17 RBIs and 13 runs in 44 games as a junior with the Salukis.
Columbia’s Keeler van Breusegen had a fine freshman season, hitting .296 with 11 RBIs and 12 runs in 28 games.
Metter, also from Columbia, hit .177 with three home runs, 13 RBIs and 16 runs in 49 games played as a sophomore.
Taryn Pena, also from Columbia, finished her college softball career by hitting .252 with eight home runs, 43 RBIs, 37 runs and 15 doubles.
Younger sister Chelsy hit .219 with 10 RBIs and eight runs in 46 games played as a freshman at SEMO.
Her teammate, former Dupo standout Donald, hit .202 with seven RBIs in 57 games.
Another former Columbia softball standout, Caitlyn Touchette, finished her college softball career by hitting .348 with five home runs, 33 RBIs and 20 runs in 40 games at Lindenwood-St. Charles.
Her former teammate, Columbia’s Calli Wibbenmeyer, hit .282 with two home runs, 34 RBIs and 19 runs in 47 games as a freshman at Rockhurst University.
Continuing the run on former Columbia standouts, Kalli Farmer hit a whopping .438 with 15 stolen bases, 38 runs and a .545 on base percentage as a junior infielder at Millikin University.
Emelia Modglin of Waterloo, a senior catcher at Fontbonne University, hit .346 with 17 RBIs in 35 games.
Gibault grad Sidney Wightman, a freshman at Eureka College, hit .273 with five RBIs in 15 games and was 9-2 in the pitching circle with a 3.77 ERA in 65 innings.
In NAIA play, Dupo’s Amber Mobbs and Waterloo’s Miranda Brown played at Missouri Baptist. Mobbs, a junior, hit .278 in 36 games with four stolen bases and 19 runs. Brown, a sophomore, hit a home run in 17 games played.
Britney Edwards of Columbia, a freshman at Columbia College, hit .200 in limited play.
In junior college softball, Waterloo’s Taylor Kaufmann and Hannah King and Dupo’s Taylor Esmon all sizzled at the plate for SWIC.
Kaufmann hit .422 with four home runs with 26 RBIs and 19 runs in 34 games.
King hit .347 with 24 RBIs and 20 runs in 37 games.
Esmon hit .342 with five home runs, 22 RBIs and 27 runs in 39 games.
Another former Dupo softball star, Skylure Barlow, finished her junior college career in style at Jefferson College, hitting .324 with 13 home runs, 55 RBIs and 47 runs in 53 games.