ASU softball signs 5 recruits, including 3 pitchers

TEMPE, Ariz. — The Arizona State University softball program has signed five players to national letters of intent: Infielder Dani Nelson of Gilbert High, pitcher Breanna Macha of Mesa Red Mountain, pitcher Shea Keopnick of Phoenix Desert Vista, outfielder Nichole Chilson of Heritage High in Romoland, Calif., and pitcher Dale Ryndak of Downers Grove (Ill.) North.

The addition of three pitchers was an important get for the Sun Devil squad, which loses standouts Dallas Escobedo and Mackenzie Popescue to graduation following the 2014 season.

“I think we had some definite needs that were important to address, and I think we’ve done that,” coach Craig Nicholson said. “We’ve got a good group of kids who will do well on and off and the field and continue to represent Arizona State University with success and integrity.”

Nelson is a three-year letter winner at Gilbert who hit .439 with 10 home runs as a junior. She also was 8-0 as a pitcher and was listed as No. 56 in the Hot 100 Seniors by studentsports.com. Her mother, Annette Marie De La Cruz, played softball at ASu in 1985.

Macha is a two-time All-Arizona selection who has helped Red Mountain win three state championships. She is ranked No. 70 on the list of Hot 100 Seniors by studentsports.com. She is teammates with Nelson on the Arizona Firecrackers club program.