EUGENE – Looking to extend one of the most impressive runs in school history, the University of Oregon softball coaching staff was honored by ESPN.com for signing one of the nation’s top freshman classes for the upcoming 2013 season.

The Ducks were tied for third nationally for most players on the 2012 ESPN.com Top 100 list (4), while Georgia stood first overall (7). Arizona followed in second place (5), and Alabama and California tied UO for third (4) overall.
   
The Ducks’ four top-100-ranked picks included:
#9, Janelle Lindvall, C, RH-RT, 5-10, Stevenson Ranch, Calif., West Ranch HS (So Cal Firecrackers)
#27, Danica Mercado, IF, LH-RT, 5-4, Temecula, Calif., Great Oak HS (So Cal Athletics)
#29, Cheridan Hawkins, P, LH-LT, 5-10, Anderson, Calif., Anderson HS (Sorcerors Gold (Mumma)))
#63, Koral Costa, UT, RH-RT, 5-5, San Pedro, Calif., San Pedro HS (So Cal Firecrackers Club)

Oregon’s deepest-ever recruiting class also features three other decorated players:
- Stevie Jo Knapp, IF, RH-RT, 5-10, Chino Hills, Calif., Ayala High School (Strike Force Gold).
- Karine Shaver, IF, LH-RT, RT, 5-4, Waipahu, Hawai’i, Kamehameha HS (Guava Jam Black)
- Andrinae White, OF, RH-RT, 5-5, Fairfield, Calif., St. Patrick-St. Vincent HS (Sorcerors Gold (Mumma))

The complete list of the top 100 recruits is available at the http://proxy.espn.go.com/high-school/softball/x98A-uY7q-8hRm/recruiting/rankings/players/_/class/2012 URL address.

Among other recent national prep honors, Lindvall was chosen to the 2012 ESPN High School All-America First Team, while Hawkins was a 2012 Under Armour Second-Team pick and Under Armour First-Team choice for the second straight year.

Under the direction of third-year head coach Mike White, the Ducks come off one of their greatest seasons ever in 2012 with a 45-18 overall mark and 13-9 Pac-12 record. UO capped the campaign ranked fifth in both national polls; placed third in the Pac-12 for the second straight season; and scored its second-most wins ever in school history en route to its second Women’s College World Series trip.

The six-member newcomer class will help ease the loss of three senior starters from 2012 – Kelsey and Lindsey Chambers and utility player Christie Nieto. Chambers ended her career ranked top four all-time for UO in career homers (second, 36) and RBI (fourth, 138), and Nieto ranked nationally in ’12 in on-base percentage (24th, .516) and slugging (105th, .638).

This week, White and sophomore pitcher Karissa Hovinga are busy coaching and playing in the ISF World Series in Whitehorse, Yukon. Hovinga is on the Canadian National Team that has started the tourney with a 4-1 record, while White is a Team USA assistant coach. The Americans have gone 4-0 so far, and are after their eighth straight world title (and would-be 10th gold medal overall) in the 12th edition of the event.

More World Series information is available at the http://www.worldfastpitch2012.com website.

Looking ahead, Duck coaches will be busy next month hosting a Southern California Satellite Elite Camp on August 21-23.

More information on the Duck softball camps is available at the www.GoDucks.com home page at the http://www.goducks.com/ViewArticle.dbml?DB_OEM_ID=500&ATCLID=204830692 URL address.



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