HAMDEN, Conn. – Quinnipiac softball head coach Germaine Fairchild and her staff announced the signing of two players to National Letters of Intent who will join the Bobcats in the fall of 2013. Shortstop Madison Kelly (Whitehall, Pa.) and utility player Julia McGovern (Levittown, Pa.) will help make up part of the Quinnipiac softball Class of 2017. Both players add quality leadership skills with proven success on and off the field.
Kelly hails from Whitehall, Pa. and is a four-year starter at shortstop for the Whitehall High School varsity squad. The standout infielder picked up a 2011 Pennsylvania All-State second team selection at shortstop as a sophomore and followed with another All-State second team distinction in 2012 after a stellar junior year. Kelly racked up Lehigh Valley Conference first team (2011), second team (2010) and honorable mention (2012) honors through her first three varsity seasons. She also is a three-time Morning Call All-Area selection including back-to-back first team distinctions the past two seasons. Kelly posted a monster junior year in 2012 playing for Whitehall as she compiled a .412 batting average with 28 hits, seven double, five triples, 13 RBIs and 15 stolen bases while showcasing stellar defensive ability playing shortstop. She picked up valuable experience while playing for the Jersey Inferno Gold, a high-powered tournament team that played in several tournaments throughout the country. The two-sport star also was a four-year varsity starter on the Whitehall basketball team and was named captain for her senior year. Noted for her off-field accolades, Kelly is a member of the National Honor Society and Spanish National Honor Society, in addition to Mu Alpha Theta, a National Honor Society that recognizes students who enjoy and excel in mathematics.
"Madison is a highly accomplished student and athlete," Fairchild said. "She will compete for the Bobcats at the shortstop position, and contribute to our offense with her consistency. Her strong classroom performance will bolster our team's effort to excel academically."
McGovern plays for Neshaminy High School and lives in Levittown, Pa. She comes to Quinnipiac with experience playing a myriad of positions including catcher, third base, second base, first base, and outfield. McGovern is a four-year member of the varsity softball squad and first made a name for herself in 2011 during her sophomore season. As the Neshaminy starting catcher, she finished with an impressive .442 batting average and 10 RBIs to go along with a .985 fielding percentage behind the plate. She helped lead her team to the PA Quad AAAA State Semifinals before taking home a couple postseason accolades following her breakout season including SOL National Conference All-League catcher honorable mention and Neshaminy Varsity Coaches Softball Defensive MVP. McGovern was asked to play third base as a junior last season for Neshaminy and once again excelled offensively with a .372 batting average, 26 runs scored, eight doubles, three triples, .448 on-base percentage and 12 RBIs. The position change certainly didn't halt her defensive play as she finished the year with a .993 fielding percentage. Her impressive play in 2012 led to a SOL National Conference All-League second team honor at third base as well as the recipient of the Neshaminy Varsity Coaches Softball Leadership Award. McGovern also played for the Lower South Liberty Gold travel team in 2012 and posted a batting average of .336 (66-for-196), 39 runs scored, 20 doubles, three home runs, 50 RBIs and .387 on-base percentage in 80 games played. She shined defensively once again with Lower South Liberty Gold as she finished with a .993 fielding percentage at third base and 1.000 behind the plate. Her travel team was the runner-up at the ASA Gold qualifier in Virginia Beach and then won the ASA Gold qualifier in Drifton, Pa. to earn a spot in the 2012 ASA Gold Nationals in Oklahoma City. McGovern has also dedicated a great deal of time off the field as she is a member of the National Honor Society, elected as her school's NHS Secretary in 2012, student ambassador throughout all four years of high school and member of the Neshaminy Academic Enrichment Program. She also has been a member of the Neshaminy Drama Club since 2010 and used her performing skills as a member of the Roadies, a select drama program that travels to elementary schools performing student-written shows to raise money for various charities.
"Julia is a versatile player who will contribute defensively both behind the plate and at the corner positions," Fairchild said. "Offensively Julia will add power to our line-up. She has a well-rounded background of extracurricular activities that will enhance our program and the University community."
The 2013 Quinnipiac softball squad will open their season in February with their first opponent to be determined in the upcoming weeks when the schedule will be announced. The Bobcats return 10 letter winners from the 2012 team that finished as the Northeast Conference Tournament Finals runner-up and completed the year with a 34-18 record, marking their second straight 30-win campaign.
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