Nov. 17, 2006
Five student-athletes have signed National Letters of Intent to attend UCLA, incoming head coach Kelly Inouye-Perez announced today. The group includes Samantha Camuso, GiOnna DiSalvatore, Monica Harrison, Donna Kerr and Katie Schroeder.
Inouye-Perez will begin her inaugural season as UCLA's head softball coach in February, 2007, following the retirement of Sue Enquist effective January 1, 2007.
Camuso is an infielder from Redding, Calif. She was named a first-team Louisville Slugger/NFCA High School All-American in 2006 playing for Foothill High School. As a shortstop at Foothill, she was also named to the All-Eastern Athletic League team at the end of the high school season. "Sammy is very athletic and has a beautiful swing," said Inouye-Perez.
DiSalvatore hails from Palm Harbor, Fla. She earned Second-Team Lousiville Slugger All-America honors in 2006 and is a middle infielder with a great deal of offensive power. As a high school junior last season, DiSalvatore hit .500 on the year with 45 hits in 90 at-bats for Countryside High School. "Gionna is a powerful lefty hitter and has strength and quickness like [current UCLA shortstop] Jodie Legaspi," said Inouye-Perez.
Harrison, an infielder from Garden Grove, Calif., and Pacifica High School, currently leads the U.S. Junior Women's National Team as Team USA is 8-0 in pool play at the Pan Am Qualifier in Caguas, Puerto Rico. Harrison has started six games for the Americans and is 12-for-15 with nine runs scored, five RBI and a 1.000 slugging percentage for the tournament. Harrison was a member of the OC Batbusters team that won the ASA Gold Nationals tournament in Oklahoma City last August. "Monica is a solid hitter and an experienced infielder. She will come in and be a leader in the infield in her freshman year." said Inouye-Perez.
Kerr is a pitcher from San Diego, Calif., and Patrick Henry High School. Kerr was the winning pitcher in the ASA Gold Nationals championship game for the OC Batbusters and is currently 2-0 with a 0.00 ERA for Team USA at the Pan Am Qualifier. Kerr has accumulated 18 strikeouts with just one walk in the tournament and is tied for the team lead in innings pitched with nine. "I have watched Donna succeed at every level and am excited to get her in a Bruin uniform. Our strength has always been in the circle and I believe Donna will continue that tradition. Lisa [Fernandez, UCLA assistant coach]and I are both looking forward to working with her"
Schroeder is an outfielder from Esperanza High School in Yorba Linda, Calif. She has started six games and played in seven for Team USA at the Pan Am Qualifier in Puerto Rico and is another member of the OC Batbusters squad that won Gold Nationals last August. "Katie will take over as the quarterback in centerfield. She is a threat at the plate using both the short game as a slap hitter and has the ability to hit for power, similar to Bruin standout Natasha Watley, who will be her hitting coach when Katie enters as a freshman." said Inouye-Perez.
"I believe this is the top recruiting class in the country," said Inouye-Perez. "This group brings a great deal of championship experience both at the ASA and Junior National Team levels. It is one of the most athletic classes to ever come into UCLA and it couldn't happen at a better time because of the departure of our 2007 senior class. I believe this class will come in and make an impact all four years they are in uniform."
UCLA softball leads the nation with 11 National Championships, most recently taking the title in 2004 before finishing second in 2005 and third in 2006. The Bruins are scheduled to open their 2007 season on February 9, 2007, at the Kajikawa Classic in Phoenix, Ariz.