|East athletes take first collegiate steps|
December 11, 2007
Lincoln-Way East's John Lorenz always knew he wanted to play Big Ten baseball. With dreams of playing professionally, Lorenz wanted to situate himself at a school that would give him the best opportunity to improve his game.
After visiting a plethora of Big Ten schools, Lorenz chose the University of Michigan where he will also be studying kinesiology.
"I really liked the Big Ten and it's really close to home," he said. "It was far enough away, but close enough that my parents can come up for a weekend game. I liked the coaching staff and just felt like it was the right spot for me."
Lorenz, who will automatically be entered in to the amateur baseball draft, has talked with several professional scouts and expects to be drafted. However, Lorenz will only forgo his freshman year at Michigan if the contract offered is substantial.
Meanwhile, the Griffin shortstop expects to get immediate playing time at Michigan as the Wolverines' current shortstop is expected to leave after this season to play professionally.
Look for Lorenz to be a mainstay in the Lincoln-Way East lineup and certainly a steady glove in the field.
Though Lorenz was the only member of the Griffins' baseball team at Wednesday's signing day, three infielders on the softball diamond will continue their athletic careers in college.
Brianna Lizen committed to play catcher at Illinois State University in the beginning of her junior year.
"I wasn't planning on going this close," she said. "But I went on my unofficial visit and liked the coach and want to be an elementary education teacher and ISU had a great program for that."
Of the three Griffin softball players who have committed to play in college, Lizen is the only one who has played her true position throughout her high school career.
Maggie Kerrigan has committed to play at Grand Valley State came into Lincoln-Way East as third baseman. However, playing a year behind an All-American, Kerrigan was asked to move to first base.
Unbeknownst to her, this move proved to help her be recruited as a college softball player. Kerrigan was recruited as a utility player, meaning when scouted by Grand Valley State, the coaches felt she could play a number of positions.
Possibly the most intriguing story of signing day was Rosie Wysocki who has yet to start for the Lincoln-Way East softball. Nonetheless coaches from St. Joseph in Indiana saw enough from Wysocki in the summer to offer her a scholarship.
Wysocki who wants to be an economics teacher may also pursue a career coaching softball.
She figures to start this year for the Griffins either at second base or shortstop.
Conversely, Lauren Zallis has been a member of the Lincoln-Way East soccer team who has been counted on to play a number of positions—wherever the Griffins needs have been.
After playing sweeper in her junior season, Zallis will return to the offensive side of the ball and play center midfield.
She committed to play at Northern Arizona, where she will receive a full scholarship, 70 percent of which is based on athletic accomplishment and the other 30 percent on academic merit.
Zallis will certainly be marked by every team now that it is known that she'll be playing at the collegiate level.
"It puts pressure on you because you want to present your school with a good name," she said. "It makes you work a lot harder and the pressure is still on. I hope it [the pressure] happens. Bring it on."
The Carr twins were the only fall sports representatives at signing day. Lindsey and Brittany will play at Southern Indiana and Augustana respectively.
The two took turns going downstate in the previous two years before finally going to the state golf meet together this past season.
After looking to improve her short game at Southern Indiana, Lindsey intends on continuing with a career in golf in some capacity. The Griffin senior wants to sell golf clubs or work for some sort of golf company