November 13, 2008

Wildcats recruited by top D-1 universities

Six Baseball Players Sign Letters of Intent

Stellar batting averages and pitching statistics put up by six Western Nevada College baseball players have led to scholarships offered by several of the country's top Division 1 baseball teams and one NAIA university. The signing ceremony for Brian Barnett, Kyle Starratt, Jerome Pena, Logan Odom, Josh Moody, and Marshall Kennebrew took place at noon Wednesday in the Dini Student Center on the Carson City campus.

"This is the highest number of early signings we've had," Coach DJ Whittemore said. "For our college to be recognized and have players sign with universities that have won multiple national titles is just great. Our program isn't just about winning. We want to develop integrity and character and make them the type of players and students that four-year colleges want to recruit."

McQueen High product Brian Barnett will sign with his hometown school, the University of Nevada, Reno, after a spectacular freshman year with the Wildcats. The right-fielder terrorized Scenic West Athletic Conference pitchers with his bat and set single season school records in home runs (11), runs (44), RBI (44), hits (68), slugging percentage (.631) and total bases (118) in 58 games.

Pitcher Logan Odom will be going to the most storied baseball program of them all next year: University of Southern California, which has won 12 NCAA baseball titles, more than any other college. Odom is a 6' 6" right-hander whose fastball has been clocked at 93 mph.

Kyle Starratt and Jerome Pena will attend Texas Christian University of the Mountain West Conference. Starratt, a right hander, was the ace of last season's staff, finishing with a 9-4 record and only 17 walks in 89 innings. Pena played right field and earned All Region XVIII first team honors in the SWAC. He batted .276 with 41 runs scored.

TCU's Horned Frogs have been ranked in the Top 25 off and on in each of the last four years and have won three straight MWC regular season titles as well as five straight conference tournament crowns.

Arizona State will get Josh Moody, who finished with a 2.37 ERA and an 8-4 record last year. He had an excellent strikeout record, fanning 73 in 79 2/3 innings. ASU is one of the top college baseball teams in the country with five NCAA crowns, and was the top-ranked team in the country most of last season. They have been the team to beat in the Pac-10 conference for the past two decades.

Outfielder Marshall Kennebrew is signing with an NAIA university, Point Loma Nazarene University of San Diego. Kennebrew is a 6' 1", 216 lb. right-hander.

Whittemore said for the top baseball programs in the country to come calling at Western is a testimony to the players' many years of hard work.

"As a coaching staff we are proud to have had the chance to coach these young men. They are excellent students, great teammates, hard workers, and talented players to boot. WNC is proud to have played a role in helping their dreams come true!"

The Western baseball team has been in existence three years. The first year it won the regular season Scenic West conference title; in 2007 the Wildcats won an NJCAA Regional Championship and a trip to the NJCAA World Series. In 2008, the team was runner-up in both the regular season and tournament championship.

Whittemore said that with this year's six players, a total of 34 former Wildcats have signed with four-year programs since May 2006. Nineteen of those players signed with NCAA Division 1 schools.


Photo Gallery
Photos (Click to Enlarge)
Brian Barnett Jerome Pena Josh Moody
Brian BarnettJerome PenaJosh Moody
Kyle Starratt Logan Odom Marshall Kennebrew
Kyle StarrattLogan OdomMarshall Kennebrew
For additional information, please contact:
WNC Information and Marketing Services
2201 W. College Parkway
Carson City, NV 89703
Phone: 775-445-3234
Fax: 775-445-3198

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