NASHVILLE --- The Tennessee State University softball team has added six student-athletes to the 2017-18 roster, according to head coach Tom Opdenbrouw. Chelsea Getz (Decatur, Ill.), Didi Rivera (Brooklyn, Ohio), Katie Schneider (Fountain City, Ind.), Ally Shores (Norcross, Ga.), Val Thompson (Milford, Ohio) and Bri Vire (Vancouver, Wash.) will make up the Class of 2021.
“We are very excited to welcome this outstanding signing class to the TSU Tiger Softball Family,” Opdenbrouw said. “They add depth, power, and versatility to our program. They’re highly motivated student-athletes that exemplify excellence in the classroom, on the softball diamond, and in society.“
OF/3B, R/R, Decatur, Ill., Meridian HS / Central Illinois Chaos 99 Elite
Getz is a three year athlete who helped MHS and head coach Greg Streeval to a Regional Championship in 2016. Getz improved on a 2nd team All-Conference campaign as a sophomore, to earn 1st team All-Conference, All-County and 2nd team All-State selection as a junior.
Getz was a four-year letter-winner and two-time captain in volleyball. She has been name All-Conference in each of the last two seasons and earned an IHSA scholastic achievement award as a junior. Getz was also a member of the basketball team as a freshman and was given the Hawk Hustle Award.
Getz is active at MHS serving as Vice President of student council, Vice President of SADD (Students Against Destructive Decisions), Co- President of the National Honor Society and is a volunteer at her church, helping in children’s ministry. She is also a class officer, was named 2016 Homecoming Queen and helps with the Special Olympics in softball and volleyball.
Getz plays travel ball for coaches Andy Rock, Jim Getz, and Greg Hildebrand and the Central Illinois Chaos 99 Elite. Her summer team placed third at the ASA State Championships and claimed the ASA Northern National Championship. Getz works independently with hitting coach Randy Inman.
Getz intends to major in Architectural Engineering in hopes to work for one of the top architectural firms in the country.
Coach Opdenbrouw on Getz
“Chelsea is a hard charging, versatile player that will run through a wall to help her team win. Chelsea has been coming to our camps over the last couple of years and really impressed our team and staff with how hard she plays the game. She possesses a very powerful bat and has shown an ability to come through with a lot of clutch hits in her prep career.”
SS/2B, L/R, Brooklyn, Ohio, Brooklyn HS / Sundogs 18u - Sunagel
Rivera heads into her fourth season as a three-time team MVP for coaches Timothy Hanlon and Michele Rivera at BHS. The lefty hitter has amassed a batting average close to .600 over her three year career while swiping 110 bases. Over her time at BHS, she has been named First Team PAC and All-State Honorable Mention all three seasons.
Rivera set the school record for stolen bases with 36 as a freshman, only to break her own record with 42 as a junior. The middle infielder also broke the record for batting average as a sophomore at .632, before resetting the mark at .644 as a junior.
Rivera played for three seasons, two on varsity, for the basketball team at BHS. Off the field, Rivera helped with the Athletic Boosters, as part of her Criminal Justice program volunteered security work.
Rivera played for Doug Lenos of the Ohio Hawks Gold from 2014-16, before joining Jim Piazza and Duane Sunagel of the Sundogs 18U. She has worked with hitting instructors Bill Lilley and Tracey Mccoy.
Rivera plans on majoring in Criminal Justice at Tennessee State.
Coach Opdenbrouw on Rivera
“Didi is a very athletic player who is silky smooth with the glove. She also swings a great stick from the left side. She is a true five-tool player who we expect to be a major offensive contributor. We have known Didi for a few years now. She was an Ohio Hawks teammate of current Tiger, Patton Akers and fellow signee, Katie Schneider.”
P, R/R, Fountain City, Ind., Northeastern HS / Ohio Hawks 18U Gold Lenos
Schneider played three seasons for Mike Roeder, helping to the 2015 TEC Conference Championship. Schneider was named 2014 Offensive Player of the Year, 2015 Defensive Player of the Year and 2016 Cy Young Award winner. During her career she has totaled 27 home runs, a .475 batting average, a .531 on base percentage, 88 RBI, 202 at bats, and had a 1.54 ERA as a junior to go with 364 career strikeouts.
As a sophomore, she was named Pal-item All-Area and followed up with a TEC All-Conference selection, Pal-item Player of The Year and a spot on the 2016 All State team as a junior.
Schneider was a four year letter-winner in volleyball, recording the most aces as a sophomore and was selected 2016 Monroe Central Invitational MVP. Schneider has been a member of Future Farmers of America, the National Honor Society, a Jr. Athletic Director, a Football Manager and a part of 4-H.
Schneider plays travel ball for Doug Lenos and the Ohio Hawks 18U Gold. She has worked with pitching coach Dave Fisherback.
Schneider intends to major in Sports Administration in hopes to become a collegiate athletic director.
Coach Opdenbrouw on Schneider
“Katie is a strong right-handed power pitcher. She has excellent velocity and movement on her pitches. Katie is a true student of the game and its strategies. She is a tremendous teammate and team player. Katie’s work ethic will automatically push others to another level.”
C/1B/OF, L/L, Norcross, Ga., Norcross HS / Atlanta Vipers - Laukka
Shores was a 1st Team All-County - 7AAAAAA selection as a junior for NHS head coach Ryan Ermers. She was honored as Best Offensive Player as a sophomore, as well as All-County honorable mention.
Off the field, Shores participated in Mock Trial, earning Best Attorney Award as a junior and was accepted into Law Academy as a senior. She was also a part of the Animal and Environmental Awareness Club, the Blue Crew and Theatre.
Shores plays travel ball for David Laukka’s Atlanta Vipers and works with hitting coach Ashlye Washington and catching instructor Audra Thomas.
She looks to major in either English or Business before pursing Law School in hopes to be a lawyer and possibly go into politics.
Coach Opdenbrouw on Shores
“Ally is a player! She is a lefty hitter who flat out rakes. She has some of the quickest hands I have seen. Ally hits for a high average but also has tremendous power and runs very well. She plays all out and is a leader on the field. She does a great job calling pitches and working with her staff. I really love her versatility defensively as well! Ally is a coach on the field and brings a lot of intangibles to our family!”
P/1B, L/L, Milford, Ohio, Milford HS / Freedom Elite
Thompson helped coaches Tim and Christy Gregory and MHS to three consecutive Eastern Cincinnati Conference Championships. Thompson was named 1st Team ECC All-Conference, Honorable Mention All-Ohio, Ohio Spring All-Stars, 2016 Softball Division 1 Co-Player of the Year, 1st Team All-Metro Cincinnati and was a Cincinnati Enquirer Softball Player of the Year Greater Cincinnati Sports Awards Finalist after posting a 1.09 ERA as a junior.
Thompson opened her career as a two-time ECC 2nd Team All-Conference selection and was a part of the ECC 1st Team All-Academic squad in all three seasons. She also participated in the National Honor Society, the Spanish Club and was a member of the Eco Animal Committee at MHS.
Thompson plays for Mark Santos and Tim Adams with the Freedom Elite. She works individually with hitting coach Tim Gregory and pitching coach Misty Bridges.
Thompson plans to major in Agricultural Sciences with a concentration in Environmental Science. She has set goals to be an environmental scientist/specialist and would like to work for conservation organizations such as Delta Waterfowl.
Coach Opdenbrouw on Thompson
“Val is a hard throwing left handed pitcher with a lot of movement. She is very crafty in the circle and often has hitters just eating out of her hand. She also has an extra gear in her in pressure situations. Val also fields her position very well. She also swings a powerful left handed bat. Val has developed into a major run producer for her Ohio Freedom Elite team.”
OF, R/R, Vancouver, Wash., Skyview HS / Blaze Gold
Coach Opdenbrouw on Vire
“Brianna is a tremendous athlete who has great size at 5’10, covers a lot of ground, and has a tremendous arm. Brianna hits solid line drives and has gap potential. She is also a stolen base threat. One of the things that impressed me the most was her competitiveness and softball IQ. Brianna is another camper that stood out on her quest to become a Tiger. Being from Washington, she has played a lot of great competition on the West Coast.”
TSU Softball 2016 Signees
Chelsea Getz - OF/3B, R/R, Decatur, Ill., Meridian HS / Central Illinois Chaos 99 Elite
DiDi Rivera - SS/2B, L/R, Brooklyn, Ohio, Brooklyn HS / Sundogs 18u - Sunagel
Katie Schneider - P, R/R, Fountain City, Ind., Northeastern HS / Ohio Hawks 18u Gold Lenos
Ally Shores - C/1B/OF, L/L, Norcross, Ga., Norcross HS / Atlanta Vipers - Laukka
Val Thompson - P/1B, L/L, Milford, Ohio, Milford HS / Freedom Elite
Bree Vire - OF, R/R, Vancouver, Wash., Skyview HS / Blaze Gold