HARRISONBURG, Va., Aug. 9, 2013 – Coming off a historic first season and heading into his second school year as the James Madison softball coach, Mickey Dean is bringing in a large freshman class. The Dukes have 13 new players joining the roster this fall.
Over the next week, the team will announce a handful of players each day, beginning today with November signees outfielder Taylor Newton (Bradenton, Fla./Lakewood Ranch), middle infielder Madyson Moran (Taylor Mill, Ky./Holy Cross) and utility player Mimi Morris (Kenilworth, Ill./New Trier).
Newton comes to JMU out of Lakewood Ranch High School in Bradenton, Fla., and also played for the Sarasota Heat 18U Gold club team. She is a four-year varsity letterwinner for the softball team. As a freshman in 2010, she was named the Rookie of the Year on Lakewood Ranch’s district championship team. She is a three-time All-Area Team honoree and, as a junior in 2012, she led her team to the State Final Four with a .379 batting average, 11 doubles, four triples and three home runs. She also did not commit an error all season. Newton is a Varsity Letter Scholar Athlete, given to students with a 4.0 or greater weighted GPA.
During her senior season, the Bradenton, Fla., native was named the Lakewood Ranch Softball Most Valuable Player. She was also selected to the Florida All-Star team, was an All-Area Selection and was named the Brighthouse Athlete of the Week.
Moran played for Holy Cross High School in Covington, Ky. She played her club ball for the Beverly Bandits and Cincy Doom, competing at the ASA/USA Nationals and the Premiere Nationals. Heading into her senior season, she is Holy Cross’ all-time leader in hits, home runs, RBIs, stolen bases and runs scored. She is a three-time Team MVP and was also named the Offensive Player of the Year. As a sophomore in 2011, Moran hit .603 with nine home runs and followed that up with a .596 batting average with four homers in 2012. She is a four-time District and Region All-Tournament team selection.
As a senior at Holy Cross High School, Moran garnered First Team All-District and Holy Cross High School Most Valuable Player. She batted .720 with 12 home runs, nine triples and 65 runs scored on her way to being selected Cincinnati Enquirer All-First Team.
Moran also played soccer in high school, picking up All-State and All-Region recognitions.
Morris played for New Trier High School in Winnetka, Ill., while playing her club ball for the Illinois Chill. As a junior, she hit .500 with 35 runs scored and 31 stolen bases while leading her team to both conference and regional championships. She was named to the All-Area and All-State teams. As a sophomore, her team finished fourth at the Illinois High School Association 4A Championships after winning both the Sectional and Super-Sectional Championships. She hit .379 with 28 runs and 11 stolen bases.
Coach Dean and the Dukes announce two more incoming freshmen on Monday, Aug. 12.
# # #