Head Utah Valley University softball coach TJ Hubbard announced Wednesday that he has signed seven individuals to a National Letter of Intent during the early signing period. All seven additions are current high school seniors and will come to UVU to play softball for the Wolverines in 2018-19.
"We are extremely excited to announce this 2018 signing class here at Utah Valley University," Hubbard said. "This group brings a wealth of experience, athleticism and versatility both offensively and defensively. These seven student-athletes are relentless competitors who are committed to the process both in the classroom and on the field. We are excited to watch them develop and grow as they continue their softball careers as Wolverines."
Of Hubbard's seven signees, two hail from Utah, as well as two more each from Arizona and California, while one comes from Texas. Payton Hammond (Grantsville, Utah/Tooele HS) and Brylee Marziale (Tremonton, Utah/Box Elder HS) are the pair of local products from Utah, while Abby Doughty (Vail, Arizona/Cienega HS), Jordan Freas (Midlothian, Texas/Midlothian Heritage HS), Kyla Hardy (Valencia, California/Valencia HS), Karleigh Olsen (Corona, California/Santiago HS) and Peyton Prigge (Phoenix, Arizona/Horizon HS) come from out of state.
Hammond, who is a current senior at Tooele High School in Tooele, Utah, is a three-time all-region and a one-time first-team all-state performer for the Buffaloes. She is also a two-time honorable mention all-state performer, as well as a three-time first-team all-county honoree. The left-handed hitter, who also earned the Superintendent Academic Award in 2015 and 2016 and played her club ball for the Utah Firecrackers, will enter her senior year on the heels of a solid junior campaign where she batted .527 with nine homers and 16 doubles.
Marziale also hails from Utah, as she is a current high school senior at Box Elder High School in Brigham City. The right-handed pitcher is coming off an impressive junior season where she posted a 1.35 ERA and a 1.07 WHIP in 112 innings of work. Marziale, who helped the Bees win a region title and post a fourth-place finish at state last year, was tabbed first-team all-state in 2017 after also hitting .514 with 14 homers, 12 doubles and 35 RBIs. She previously played her freshman and sophomore seasons at neighboring rival Bear River High before transferring to Box Elder, and she played her club ball for the Firecrackers and the Attitude Roadrunners.
Doughty, who is a current senior at Cienega High in Vail, Arizona, batted .442 a season ago with nine doubles, six triples, four homers and 35 runs batted in. She has also tallied 59 stolen bases and nine round-trippers during her high school career. Doughty, who has also helped her high school team win a pair of state championships at the Arizona Division II level, is a speedster that hits from the left side.
Freas, who hails from Midlothian Heritage High School in Midlothian, Texas, is a three-time first-team all-district performer. She is also a two-time MVP for the Jaguars, as well as a two-time academic all-district honoree. The right-handed infielder is coming off an impressive junior season where she posted a .626 batting average and a 1.036 slugging with 11 doubles, seven triples, three homers and 33 RBIs. Freas has played club ball for Mizuno Impulse, Texas Glory and SoCal Choppers.
Hardy will come to UVU from Valencia, California, where she is a current senior at Valencia HS. The right-handed infielder is a four-year varsity performer that was tabbed first-team All-Foothill League a season ago. She also received the scholar-athlete award and was named the Los Angeles Daily News' SoCal Legends Athlete of the Week last May. She has helped her team to a pair of Foothill League Championships, as well as a couple of deep runs at the CIF Division I Tournament. Hardy has played club ball for SoCal Wicked and the SoCal Choppers.
Olsen, who is a current high school senior at Santiago High School in Corona, California, hit just shy of .300 a season ago while posting a .364 on-base percentage and a perfect 1.000 fielding percentage for the Sharks. The right-handed middle infielder earned the Defensive MVP at the USSSA Fastpitch World Series a couple of years ago and has played her club softball for the Corona Xpress, Minors Gold and the Corona Angels.
Prigge will come to UVU from Phoenix, Arizona, where she is a senior at Horizon High School in Scottsdale. The right-handed utility player was tabbed the 2016 Defensive Player of the Year and a 2016 PVUSD All-District Outfielder. Prigge holds a near .300 batting average for her high school career with 20 extra base hits and 21 RBIs. The future Wolverine has played club softball for AZ DeMarini Athletics and the Arizona Hotshots.
James Warnick is an assistant sports information director at Utah Valley University. For more information about Wolverine athletics, visit GoUVU.com.