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Three CCA softball athletes sign to play at Division I colleges

TIFFIN– Clear Creek Amana (CCA) High School congratulated three athletes who signed their Division I NCAA Softball letters of intent, on Wednesday Nov. 9, at CCA High School in Tiffin. Mariah McKinnon signed with Drake University, Fran Strub with Northwestern University and Caitlin Wnek with the University of Northern Iowa.
All three athletes were instrumental in leading CCA to the Class 3A State Softball Title last summer.
McKinnon was 26-1 as a pitcher last summer with a 1.39 ERA. In her career with CCA she is 52-3. As an offensive player McKinnon has scored 146 runs, with 109 stolen bases in her career. McKinnon was named to the WAMAC First Team All Conference teams in 2010 and 2011, the Class 3A Second Team All State in 2011 and Third Team All State in 2010. She was also named to the 2011 State All Tournament Team.
McKinnon said she will study business at Drake University, and expects to be a utility player, she said, perhaps pitching some and playing both outfield and infield positions.
McKinnon said she has played softball with some of her CCA teammates her whole life, and that’s part of why she continues to play the game.
“I love the competition, the fresh air, being outside in the summer,” said McKinnon. “And Jim (CCA head softball coach Jim White) saw my potential and just kept pushing me to my limits. He knew I could keep getting better.”
Wnek, who batted .625 with 64 runs, 85 RBI, with 38 extra base hits including nine home runs last summer, said she plans to study for a sports-related career, perhaps physical therapy or sports training, at the University of Northern Iowa. In the past three years Wnek hit 71 doubles, scored 204 runs, and knocked in 237 RBI. She has been named to the WaMaC First Team all conference in 2009, 2010, and 2011. She was named the 2011 Class 3A Co-Player of the Year. Wnek earned Second Team All State honors in 2009 and First Team All State Honors in 2010 and 2011. She was also named to the 2010 and 2011 State All Tournament teams.
“Softball is just a tradition at CCA,” said Wnek. “It’s a great school, and Jim is a really great coach. He taught us a lot about softball and a lot about life in general, and I really appreciate that I was able to be a part of that tradition.”
Strub, who plans to major in Learning and Organizational Change at Northwestern, played outfield and first base for CCA. She batted .609 with 87 runs, 52 stolen bases, and 40 extra base hits including 12 home runs for the Clippers last summer. During the past two years, Strub has scored 167 runs, had 172 hits, and 81 extra base hits (31 triples and 17 home runs). She was named to WaMaC First Team All Conference in 2010 and 2011. She was also named the 2011 Class 3A Co-Player of the Year. She earned First Team All State Honors in 2010 and 2011, and was named to the 2010 State All Tournament Team.
Such excellence has just been part of CCA history, Strub said.
“This program has prepared me for the next level because of what coach White expects of us and what we have learned to expect from ourselves,” said Strub. “He expects us to be the best we can be, and play as a team. I see that carrying over to my college game as well.”
The three softball players made their commitments official during a signing ceremony held in the CCA High School Media Center with parents, relatives and friends in attendance.