Auburn softball signs eight in top-tier recruiting class
AUBURN, Ala. (auburntigers.com) – Looking to build momentum on its back-to-back trips to the Women’s College World Series, the Auburn softball coaching staff has put together another elite recruiting class for the 2018 season.
“We’re excited about this class,” said head coach Clint Myers. “They’re very talented and athletic. They’re going to make us better.”
In total, the Tigers inked eight players, including five local players from the states of Alabama and Georgia. The class also spans nation-wide as three signees hail from California and Illinois to make up the nation’s No. 2 recruiting class.
“This is our first full SEC-caliber class since we got here and we expect every player in it to be a positive impact to the program,” stated assistant coach and recruiting coordinator Scott Woodard. “How fast this happens will depend on them. It has players in all four position groups and gives us tremendous depth for the 2018 season. We will be replacing the entire left side of the infield much like we did the right side this year, so having depth in the infield was imperative. We also have two pitchers in this class, which will bring our depth in the circle back up as well.”
Auburn has signed Kara Bilodeau (Cumming, Ga./South Forsyth), Makenna Dowell (Suwanne, Ga./North Gwinnett), Chardonnay Harris (Oak Park, Ill./Oak Park and River Forest), Mackenzie Nutt (Madison, Ala./Sparkman), Jenna Olszewski (Hoover, Ala./Spain Park), Livy Schiele (Bonita, Calif./The Bishop’s), Taylon Snow (Chino Hills, Calif./Chino Hills) and Abby Tissier (Hoover, Ala./Hoover).
Kara Bilodeau (Cumming, Ga./South Forsyth) & Chardonnay Harris (Oak Park, Ill./Oak Park and River Forest)
Bilodeau was tabbed as a 2016 USA Select First Team All-American and a Second Team High School All-American for head coach Ronnie Davis. She also was tabbed all-county and all-region during her first two years in varsity softball. She is the daughter of Steve and April Bilodeau and has three sisters: Hannah, Erika and Samantha.
Harris, the 2016 Illinois Player of the Year, led her team to the state championship under head coach Mel Kolbusz. She holds a career pitching record of 38-5 with 355 strikeouts in 228.1 innings. The two-time all-state and all-conference pitcher is the daughter of Bill and Leah Leark and has two siblings: Christian and Timmy.
Woodard: “Kara is a power-pitching right hander who has jumped on the national scene this past year and will also throw for the Canadian Junior National team this summer. Chardonnay is someone we have watched since we were at Arizona State. She is a tall, lanky, left-handed arm that has a tremendous upside and we can’t wait to see how her career here goes.”
Abby Tissier (Hoover, Ala./Hoover)
This past summer, Tissier was named First Team All-State and an Alabama High School Athletic Association (AHSAA) All-Star. She holds a career batting average of .349 behind 137 hits heading into her senior season, including 34 doubles, 17 home runs and two triples to go along with 113 RBI. She is the daughter of Jeff and Wendy Tissier.
Woodard: “Abby is a very good defensive catcher who has been coming to camp for three years and has a very good idea of what we do. She does a great job of leading her Birmingham Bolt pitching staff and we look forward to her growth behind the plate.”
Makenna Dowell (Suwanee, Ga./North Gwinnett), Mackenzie Nutt (Madison, Ala./Sparkman) & Taylon Snow (Chino Hills, Calif./Chino Hills)
Dowell, an all-state and four-year all-county selection, has 43 career RBI and has scored 100 runs. She has hit over .300 in her past four seasons, including two campaigns over .400, and has maintained .914 fielding percentage. She is the daughter of Eric and Kim Dowell and has one sibling: Ethan.
Nutt has been a force at the plate with 180 career hits, including 45 doubles, 14 triples and 19 home runs, and touts 167 RBI in three seasons at the dish. The First Team All-American and Huntsville Times North Region Player of the Year also has swiped 41 bases. She is the daughter of William and Renee Green.
Snow, a .504 career hitter, has totaled 177 hits, including 32 doubles, 10 triples and 17 homers, to go along with 102 RBI and 108 runs. She is a three-time all-american and was the California State Freshman of the Year in 2013. She is a daughter of Craig and Trista Snow and has two siblings: Talee and Tannon, who is a sophomore on the Auburn softball team.
Woodard: “Taylon and Makenna may be the best middle infielders defensively in the country. Both of them have tremendous range and are very versatile players. Both have above-average foot speed and both are left handed hitters. Mackenzie was named the MVP of this last year’s Alabama State Tournament after leading her team to the title. She can play all three infield spots and has been one of the best hitters in Alabama for the last three years.”
Jenna Olszewski (Hoover, Ala./Spain Park) & Livy Schiele (Bonita, Calif./The Bishop’s)
Olszewski is an all-state, all-region and all-county honoree for head coach CJ Hawkins. She has provided the pop in the lineup as she has 20 roundtrippers with 90 RBI in three seasons. She also has 37 doubles, nine triples and 20 stolen bases. She is the daughter of Jon and Joan Olszewski and has one sibling: Jordan.
Schiele holds seven school records in batting average (.589), runs (158), hits (152), doubles (30), triples, (17) walks (46) and stolen bases (90). She is a three-time Coastal League Player of the Year and has been tabbed as an all-american twice. She is the daughter of Art and Corine Schiele and has two siblings: Cody and Nick.
Woodard: “Livy was another one of our kids that we had recruited while we were at ASU. She has the ‘it’ factor that every coach is looking for. She plays with a huge motor, will run through the fence for you and is extremely coachable. She will be very good player in the SEC before her time in Auburn is over. Jenna is another Alabama product that has had great success both in high school and the club scene. She can play almost every position on the field and is extremely athletic. She possesses good foot speed, good arm strength and has some pop from the plate also.”