CORVALLIS, Ore. – The Oregon State softball team has signed five players to National Letters of Intent, head coach Laura Berg announced today. The Beavers signing class includes Gina Bond, Alysha Everett, Lovie Lopez, McKenna Arriola and Rainey Dyreson.
“I am really looking forward to this class,” Berg said. “They’re a great group, and we’re very excited for them to get here.”
The Beavers’ recruiting class was ranked third in the nation by StudentSports.com, and includes four of the site’s top-40 recruits.
Everett (Trabuco Canyon, Calif./Mission Viejo High School) is the 23rd-ranked recruit in this year’s class. The power-hitting first-baseman hit .409 at the Premier Girls Fastpitch Nationals this summer, recording two home runs and helping the OC Batbusters-Haning to a third-place finish, while competing against some of the top talent in the nation. She has been named first-team All-South Coast League and first-team All-County the last two seasons. In 2012, Everett earned all-tournament honors at both the Woodbridge Classic and the Laguna Hills Tournament.
“Alysha is a first baseman, and she can also play the outfield,” Berg said. “She is a power-hitter, and she will fit in as a good No. 3 or No. 5 hitter. Alysha is the type of hitter that you fear. She has a presence in the batter’s box that no one else has.”
Bond (Canby, Ore./Canby High School) is a three-time 6A Three Rivers first team honoree and earned 6A Oregon All-State third team recognition last season. She is the 27th-ranked recruit by StudentSports.com, and is considered to be one of the top home-run hitters in the country. Bond played under former Oregon State softball player Clare Burnam during her freshman year of high school.
“Gina will be our third-baseman, and she might be the kind of utility player that we can throw anywhere,” Berg said. “She can play anywhere, and she can hit for power.”
Arriola (Woodland Hills, Calif./Camino Real High School) is StudentSports.com’s 33rd-rated recruit. She hit .541, with 33 runs, 23 RBIs and 12 steals at Camino Real High School last season, en-route to All-City honors. She was named to the Cal-Hi Sports All-State Underclassmen second team each of the last two seasons. Arriola also played for the OC Batbusters-Haning, scoring six runs and stealing one base in 10 games in 2013.
“McKenna is a shortstop, and she can play the outfield too,” Berg said. “She is incredibly fast, and she’s a triple threat: she can bunt, she can slap and she can hit away for power. She’s going to be fun to watch. She’s the type of player that causes a lot of havoc on the bases.”
Lopez (Santa Fe Springs, Calif./St. Paul High School) is the 40th-ranked 2014 recruit, according to StudentSports.com. She hit .391 with four doubles and six walks in 23 at-bats at last year’s PGF Nationals, for OC Batbusters-Haning. She batted .449 with five home runs as a junior for St. Paul High School last season, on her way to first-team Del Rey League and All-Area honors. As a freshman at Whittier Christian High School, Lopez hit .459 with 21 stolen bases and four home runs, earning All-Olympic League honors for her performance.
“Lovie is an outfielder with a lot of speed that can cover a lot of ground,” Berg said. “She is also a triple threat: she can bunt, she can slap and she can hit away for power. I’m really looking forward to working with her because I’ve gotten a lot of great reviews on her.”
Dyreson (Twin Falls, Idaho/Twin Falls High School) was named Great Basin (West) Conference Pitcher of the Year in her freshman and sophomore years, and has competed in the PGF Nationals. She has been named the KMVT Athlete of the Week twice during her high-school career, and showed her versatility by hitting 14 home runs as a high school freshman.
“Rainey is a very strong girl and she throws hard,” Berg said. “She throws primarily drop balls, which is great, because we love drop balls and ground balls. We’re looking forward to her coming in and making a big impact.”
The Beavers will open their 2014 season Feb. 6 at the Kajikawa/ASU Classic in Tempe, Ariz.