Locals sparkling on college diamonds
Several former Monroe County high school baseball and softball standouts are showcasing their skills in various levels of collegiate athletics this spring.
Among those playing at the NCAA Division I level of baseball are 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 junior from Waterloo, is hitting .220 with seven RBIs in 16 games for the Razorbacks.
Kaiser, a 6-foot-5 sophomore righty from Waterloo, has made one start for the Commodores, pitching three innings.
Touchette, a left-handed hitting junior outfielder from Columbia, is hitting .314 with 23 runs, 19 RBIs and 12 stolen bases in 26 games for the Golden Flashes following a successful junior college baseball career at John A. Logan.
McAlister, a 6-foot-5 junior righty from Waterloo, has not made any pitching appearances for the Bears this spring.
Milam, a 6-foot-4 junior righty from Waterloo, is 1-2 with three saves and 40 strikeouts in 22-plus innings pitched for the Cougars.
Albrecht, a freshman catcher from Waterloo, has not played in any games for the Shockers.
At the NCAA Division II level, Gibault graduate Chandler Purcell is having a fine senior season at Quincy University. He’s hitting .299 with eight home runs, 35 RBIs and 32 runs for the Hawks in 37 games played, all being starts.
A fellow Gibault alumnus, Tyler Brinkmann, is 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 is 3-3 with a 3.39 ERA in 71-plus innings pitched this spring.
Brennen van Breusegen of Columbia is a freshman on the University of Central Missouri baseball squad. He has not seen any playing time thus far.
Andrew Hoguet, also of Columbia, is a junior lefty pitcher at McKendree. He has a 4.91 ERA in three and two-thirds innings pitched.
Following a successful junior college career at Southwestern Illinois College, Keegan Baxmeyer is off to a good start at Missouri S&T. The junior is hitting .280 with two home runs, 13 RBIs and 18 runs in 26 games played.
At the NCAA Division III level, freshman infielder Mitch Daniels of Columbia has appeared in one game so far at Webster University.
At the NAIA level, Gibault grad Collin Kessler is pitching at William Woods University. The 6-foot-5 sophomore righty has seven strikeouts in five appearances spanning nine innings.
Two locals are performing well at SWIC. Three-sport standout Trevor Davis, a Gibault grad, is hitting .378 with 14 RBIs and 18 runs in 24 games and is also 1-1 on the mound in 22-plus innings pitched. Valmeyer grad Cole Juelfs is hitting .274 with 13 RBIs and 17 runs in 24 games and is 0-1 on the mound in three-plus innings pitched.
Another former Pirate, sophomore infielder Easton Wallace, is hitting .333 with three home runs, 23 RBIs and 19 runs in 26 games played at Kaskaskia College.
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 sophomore utility player/pitcher from Dupo, is hitting .330 with five home runs and 17 RBIs in 38 games for the Salukis.
A freshman from Columbia, van Breusegen is hitting .295 with a homer and nine RBIs in 23 games (12 starts) for the Braves.
Metter, also from Columbia, is hitting around .200 with two homers, 15 runs and nine RBIs as a sophomore infielder with the Bears.
Taryn Pena, a senior from Columbia, is hitting .234 with five round-trippers, 30 RBIs and 30 runs in 46 games for the Bulldogs.
Younger sister Chelsy is hitting .246 with four doubles and 10 RBIs in 37 games (13 starts) in her first season with the Redhawks.
Her teammate, former Dupo standout Donald, is hitting .245 with six RBIs in 40 games.
Another former Columbia softball standout, senior infielder Caitlyn Touchette, is hitting .326 with five home runs, 28 RBIs and 15 runs in 32 games at Lindenwood-St. Charles.
Her former teammate, Columbia’s Calli Wibbenmeyer, is hitting .295 with a team-high 34 RBIs and 19 runs in 43 games as a freshman at Rockhurst University.
Continuing the run on former Columbia standouts, Kalli Farmer is hitting .373 with 30 runs, 12 RBIs and 11 stolen bases in 30 games as a junior infielder at Millikin University.
Emelia Modglin of Waterloo, a senior catcher at Fontbonne University, is hitting .320 with 16 RBIs and 12 runs in 33 games.
Gibault grad Sidney Wightman, a freshman at Eureka College, is 7-2 with a 4.09 ERA in 53 innings pitched (10 starts) and is hitting .290 with five RBIs.
In NAIA play, Dupo’s Amber Mobbs and Waterloo’s Miranda Brown at playing at Missouri Baptist. Mobbs, a junior, is hitting .269 with 17 runs in 32 games. Brown, a sophomore, has a home run in 16 games.
Britney Edwards of Columbia, a freshman at Columbia College, is hitting .200 with five stolen bases in 21 games.
In junior college softball, Waterloo’s Taylor Kaufmann and Hannah King and Dupo’s Taylor Esmon are all sizzling at the plate for SWIC.
Kaufmann is hitting .431 with three home runs and 19 RBIs in 22 games. King is hitting .338 with 16 RBIs and 12 runs in 26 games. Esmon is hitting .363 with four home runs, 17 RBIs and 21 runs in 29 games.
Another former Dupo softball star, Skylure Barlow, is hitting .337 with nine home runs, 41 RBIs and 36 runs in 39 games as a sophomore third baseman at Jefferson College.