Monroe County displayed plenty of talent on college baseball and softball diamonds this past spring, with a couple of locals advancing to the biggest stage.
Four locals played NCAA Division I baseball, with Gibault graduate Zach Neff and Waterloo High School graduate Jordan McFarland participating with their teams in this year’s College World Series with Mississippi State and Arkansas, respectively.
Much has been written recently about Neff, who was drafted by the Twins in June and is now pitching for the Elizabethton Twins in the Class A Appalachian League.
Neff went 4-3 with a 3.57 ERA and two saves in 27 appearances, at Mississippi State, which amassed 46 innings.
McFarland, who declined to sign after being drafted by the Washington Nationals out of high school, hit .299 with three home runs, 15 RBIs and 34 runs in 45 games with the Razorbacks this spring.
McFarland’s former WHS teammate, Tyler McAlister, pitched 19 innings in seven appearances this spring as a sophomore at Missouri State, including five starts. He was 0-0 with 20 strikeouts and an 8.05 ERA.
Yet another WHS teammate playing Division I baseball is Erik Kaiser, who made two pitching appearances as a freshman at Vanderbilt. Kaiser struck out three and allowed one hit in two scoreless innings pitched…>>>
A number of past local high school softball standouts performed well in college this spring.
Brianna Weilbacher, a CHS grad, earned Big 12 Conference Pitcher of the Week honors at Iowa State in early March. She finished her senior season with a record of 9-10 in 27 appearances, including 19 starts, with 88 strikeouts and a 4.03 ERA in 116-plus innings pitched.
Former CHS teammate Taryn Pena posted a solid junior season at Drake University. Pena hit .260 with 10 doubles, 18 runs and 29 RBIs in 55 games.
Yet another CHS grad playing Division I softball is Missouri State freshman Kelly Metter. She hit .189 with 13 runs, three home runs and 16 RBIs in 42 games.
Megan Brown, a 2017 Dupo High School graduate, hit .260 with two homers and 12 RBIs in 45 games and posted a 4.32 ERA in 22-plus innings pitched at Southern Illinois University Carbondale.
Fellow DHS grad Rachael Donald played in 11 games with a run scored and two RBIs at Southeast Missouri State University.
Kasey Bradley, a WHS grad, posted a 6.30 ERA in four pitching appearances (two starts) as a junior at Quincy University.
Another WHS grad, Emelia Modglin, hit .318 with three home runs, 22 RBIs and 17 runs in 36 games as a junior at Fontbonne University.
Caitlyn Touchette, a CHS grad, hit .207 with 15 RBIs and 14 runs in 43 games as a sophomore at Lindenwood University-St. Charles.
Touchette’s former CHS teammate, Kalli Farmer, had a fantastic sophomore season at Millikin University. She hit .375 with team highs in hits (42), doubles (10) and stolen bases (10) in 36 games. She also had 23 RBIs and 26 runs.
At the junior college level, Jefferson College freshman Skylure Barlow of Dupo led her team with 16 home runs and 47 RBIs. She hit .348 with 38 runs in 55 games.
Five locals were members of the SWIC softball team. WHS grad Katy Polacek led the team with a .374 average and scored 20 runs. Dupo grad Taylor Esmon hit .344 with five home runs, 26 runs and a team-high 36 RBIs. WHS grad Hannah King is also on the SWIC roster. Red Bud’s Bre Elms (1-2, 5.60 ERA) and Lexis Carner (.206, 14 runs) also played at SWIC.
Two locals were members of the Missouri Baptist softball team. Dupo grad Amber Mobbs, a sophomore outfielder, hit .244 with 17 runs in 31 games. WHS grad Miranda Brown, a freshman utility player, hit .278 with two homers and 13 RBIs in 38 games.