UCLA head softball coach Kelly Inouye-Perez has announced the signing of four high school standouts to National Letters of Intent, representing the top-ranked recruiting class according to StudentSports.com. Joining the Bruins for the 2014-2015 season are right-handed pitcher Johanna Grauer (Pleasanton, Calif./Amador Valley HS/Sorcerer), right-handed hitting catcher/first baseman Maddy Jelenicki (Santa Clarita, Calif./Saugus HS/OC Batbusters), left-handed batting utility player Kylee Perez (Martinez, Calif./Alhambra HS/Sorcerer) and right-handed pitcher Selina Ta’amilo (Buena Park, Calif./Vista Murrieta HS/So Cal Athletics).
“This class brings championship experience and versatility,” Inouye-Perez said. “Their addition to the current Bruin roster will be exciting to watch in 2014-15 and beyond.”
Grauer, ranked as the #4 recruit in the nation by StudentSports, is the two-time defending North Coast Section Player of the Year for Amador Valley High School. Last season, she was named the California State Junior of the Year, East Bay League Most Valuable Player, First Team All-State and MaxPreps First Team All-American, posting a 22-2 record with 274 strikeouts and a 0.08 earned run average in 152 innings. Grauer was also a finalist for Ms. Softball California and a California Gatorade Player of the Year nominee.
Grauer was the California State Sophomore of the Year, EBAL MVP, First Team All-State, a Ms. Softball California finalist and MaxPreps Underclass Sophomore All-American in 2012, recording a 25-1 mark, 336 strikeouts and a 0.33 ERA in 172 innings. Grauer has helped the Dons to three straight EBAL titles, a CIF NCS runner-up finish in 2012 and a CIF NCS title as a freshman in 2011.
Grauer plays travel ball with Sorcerer and helped them to a seventh-place finish at PGF Nationals, posting 47 strikeouts and a 0.59 ERA in 35 1/3 innings during the 2013 season. She was also a member of the 2013 Swedish National Softball Team, placing seventh at the European Championships. She had 78 strikeouts in 43 innings.
“Johanna is a very talented pitcher with lots of movement and a great off-speed pitch,” Inouye-Perez said. “She is a great competitor and will excel in the Pac-12.”
“UCLA has an amazing tradition in both athletics and academics,” Grauer said. “Growing up, I saw UCLA softball win multiple NCAA Championships and it made me want to go there.”
Jelenicki, ranked as the #10 recruit in the nation by StudentSports, is a three-sport athlete at Saugus High School. A MaxPreps Second Team All-American in 2013, Jelenicki hit .576 in her junior season with nine home runs, 31 runs batted in, 32 runs scored, a .685 on base percentage and a 1.181 slugging. She was also named All-CIF, All-State, First Team All-Foothill League and Best Offensive Player a year ago.
After transferring from Valencia HS to Saugus after her freshman year, she was ineligible to play softball as a sophomore, so she played baseball with the Centurions, returning to the softball diamond in her junior campaign. As a freshman at Valencia, she was a First Team MaxPreps All-American and All-Foothill League honoree, batting .500 with 10 homers, 29 RBI and 21 runs scored.
Also earning a letter in track and field in high school, Jelenicki plays travel ball with Orange County Batbusters 18U Gold. Among her many achievements in club action, she has won an ASA National Championship with 12U Corona Angels and 16U OC Batbusters, posting ASA runner-up finishes three additional times.
“We have been excited to get Maddy in the four letters for a long time,” Inouye-Perez said. “She is the type of hitter that will impact the college game immediately. She has a great presence on the field and is a quarterback behind the plate.”
“I love to win and UCLA is the place where I felt I will have the chance to win the most championships while also getting a degree from one of the most prestigious universities in the nation,” Jelenicki said.
Perez, the second-ranked recruit in the nation by StudentSports, has played three years of softball at Alhambra High School, earning First Team All-Diablo Foothill Athletic League honors all three seasons, including league MVP accolades each of her first two years. Last season, Perez hit .618 with 12 home runs, 51 runs batted in, 46 runs scored, 18 stolen bases, a .691 on base percentage and a 1.250 slugging.
As a junior, Perez was a MaxPreps All-American and has helped the Bulldogs to three consecutive DFAL titles, as well as a North Coast Section championship as a freshman. Perez, a two-time varsity captain, has hit over .500 in all three of her prep seasons, batting .568 as a sophomore in 2012 with 15 homers, 33 RBI, 47 runs and 12 steals and .628 as a freshman in 2011 with nine homers, 29 RBI and 32 steals.
Perez, who also played one year of varsity basketball and earned All-League accolades, played club with Sorcerer softball.
“Kylee is an outstanding all-around athlete,” Inouye-Perez said. “She has speed, power and great hands to play any position on the field. She excels as a leader and we look for her to impact the lineup in all parts of the game.”
“I chose UCLA for its long standing academic and athletic excellence,” Perez said. “My biggest thrill in my athletic career so far has been becoming a part of the Bruin family.”
Ta’amilo, the #32 recruit in the nation by StudentSports, has earned a trio of First Team All-Southwestern League honors at Vista Murrieta High School. Ta’amilo is also a two-time First Team All-CIF honoree and a three-time First Team All-Valley winner. Last season, she was 13-7 on the year with a 0.57 earned run average and 120 strikeouts in 134 innings. She also hit .340 with four home runs and 14 runs batted in.
A two-time team captain, Ta’amilo recorded a 1.11 ERA, a 20-4 mark and 193 strikeouts in 163 1/3 innings as a sophomore, adding a .338 average, five homers and 22 RBI. She has helped the Broncos to a pair of league titles in her freshman and sophomore seasons.
Ta’amilo played travel ball with So Cal Athletics, which were 2013 PGF National Champions.
“Selina has great tools and an impressive build at 6-foot-1,” Inouye-Perez said. “She throws hard in both zones and compliments with a great off-speed pitch. Combined with Johanna, the future in the circle is exciting.”
“The first step I took into Easton Stadium, I knew UCLA was the right place for me,” Ta’amilo said. “I’ve always wanted to become a Bruin and my dream is coming true. I love the coaching staff and I couldn’t see myself playing for anyone else.