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Toreros Grow Stronger
Nov. 9, 2017

SAN DIEGO - San Diego softball grew stronger Thursday when five players signed National Letters of Intent to join the Toreros in 2018.

USD will welcome Sophia Bjerk, Madison Earnshaw, Lauren Hendrickson and Rion Simms in the fall of 2018. Shelbianne Evans is transferring from San Diego Christian and will join the Toreros in the spring of 2018.

"I'm so excited to have these athletes join our program," said head coach Melissa McElvain. "There is great talent, ambition and character in these young ladies. I'm so happy they are officially a part of the USD softball family."

The quintet will join a USD team that is coming off its fourth consecutive top-three finish in WCC play and fourth straight winning conference season.

» Infielder | R/R
» Puyallup, Wash.
» Puyallup High School
» Washington Ladyhawks Miller Gold
  • Helped high school team finish second at the 2017 4A State Championship
  • Currently holds nine offensive school records
  • Helped lead club team to a 13th-place result at the Premier Nationals
  • Captained her 14U, 18U and high school teams
  • Earned first-team All-Area Academic Achievements honors in 2016-17
  • Volunteers at OSSR Physical Therapy
  • Has volunteered with Santa Breakfast from 2012-17
  • High school's Yell Leader for the 2017-18 school year
Why Sophia chose San Diego ...
"I chose San Diego because it felt like a vacation every time I stepped on campus."

» Pitcher | R/R
» San Carlos, Calif. 
» Notre Dame High School-Belmont
» Cal Nuggets
  • 2017 WBAL League Most Valuable Player
  • 2017 San Francisco All-Metro Team selection
  • Helped lead team to 2017 WBAL championship
  • 2016 WCAL All-League selection
  • Carries a 4.0 GPA
  • Member of school's Platinum Honor Roll
  • CIF/Subway Female Scholar-Athlete of the Spring Semester in 2016
  • National Spanish Exam honorable mention
Why Madison chose San Diego ...
"From the moment I stepped on campus, I knew USD was the place I wanted to further my education and play the game I love. The amazing location and incredible balance between academics and athletics made USD the perfect fit for me. I am so excited to be a Torero!"

» Utility | L/L
» Del Mar, Calif.
» Torrey Pines High School (San Diego Christian, 2016-17)
» SoCal Breakers-Imoto
  • 2017 All-GSAC Team selection
  • 2016 All-GSAC Team and 2016 NAIA All-America second team
  • Posted a .448 batting average in 2016 with San Diego Christian
  • 2015 All-CIF first team, All-Palomar League first team, Torrey Pines Most Valuable Player
  • Hit .494 in 88 plate appearances with no strikeouts, a .523 on-base percentage and .649 slugging percentage as a senior in high school
  • 2014 All-CIF second team and Torrey Pines Defensive Player of the Year
  • Led Torrey Pines High School to the 2012 and 2013 CIF championship
  • Volunteered at Edgemoor, sorting donated clothes and toys
  • Provided lunch and supplies to the homeless near Pacific Beach
  • Volunteered with the Special Olympics 
Why Shelbianne chose San Diego ...
"I am extremely excited about the opportunity to attend the University of San Diego to further my educational and athletic goals. Playing for a D-I program has always been my dream. USD offers me the benefit of continuing to study in a faith-based environment which is important to me. I am elated to be a Torero and can't wait to get on the field."

» Infielder | L/L
» Morgan Hill, Calif.
» Valley Christian High School
» San Jose Sting
  • Four-year varsity starter
  • 2017 All-WCAL second team selection
  • 2016 All-WCAL first-team selection
  • Helped lead team to the 2017 Central Coast Section semifinals
  • Earned a 4.0 GPA during her junior year
  • Has volunteered over 100 hours of community service throughout high school
  • Named a scholar-athlete during her freshman and junior years
Why Lauren chose San Diego ...
"I chose USD because of the beautiful campus, great academics, the softball program and the school's location."

» Infielder | R/R
» Phoenix, Ariz.
» Desert Vista High School
» Demarini Athletics
  • Two-time Tempe All-City Athletic Award recipient (2016, 2017)
  • All-Arizona Division I team (infield)
  • 2017 Arizona Central Preseason Softball Team (infield)
  • 2017 Desert Vista High School Offensive Player of the Year
  • Carries a 4.1 GPA
  • National Honor Society of High Schooll Scholars
  • Desert Vista High School Scholar-Athlete Award
Why Rion chose San Diego ...
"After visitying the University of San Diego campus and meeting with the softball coaching staff, I instantly felt a sense of belonging. After the recruiting process that I had been through, I knew I had discovered the place I was meant to be."



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