GRAND FORKS, N.D. --- University of North Dakota softball head coach Eric Oakley has announced the signing of Autumn Cervantez, Megan Hedstrom, Mazi Joslin, Jaclyn Lilek, Kaylin VanDomelen and Rachael Waynick to national letters of intent to begin playing for UND in 2014.
"Overall I am extremely excited about this class," Oakley said. "This is a strong, athletic and fit class. This class is an important piece of our ascent to the top of the Big Sky Conference, as well as our goal to be a top regional and national program."
Autumn Cervantez - Shortstop/Catcher
Entering her senior season at Oxford High School in Oxford, Mich., Cervantez is a four-year letterwinner as a shortstop and catcher. She has been named to the Oakland Athletic Association All-League First Team and the all-county second team.
She is the daughter of Kim and Richard Cervantez and plans on majoring in engineering.
Oakley said: "Autumn is a player I've had the pleasure of watching develop since eighth grade. She's a strong defensive athlete who should be able to step in right away at shortstop next season. She's an extremely hard worker who will bring a strong work ethic with her to Grand Forks."
Cerventez said on choosing UND: "The coaches and the team were very welcoming and the campus was really nice."
Megan Hedstrom - Pitcher/Utility
Coming to UND from Palatine, Ill., Hedstrom is a four-year letterwinner in softball and gymnastics at Palatine High School. The right-handed pitcher was named to the all-area team and all-conference team.
An honor-roll student, she plans on majoring in broadcast journalism and is the daughter of Matthew and Dana Hedstrom.
Oakley said: "In graduating three pitchers, we needed to find pitchers who can come in right away and contribute. Megan is a pitcher who can do that, and do it well. She hits her spots well, and will be able to give us important innings as a freshman. Beyond that, she's just a good, solid athlete who can adapt and play several positions."
Hedstrom said on choosing UND: "It is a very good program and the girls make it a fun team."
Mazi Joslin - Utility
A native of Monroe, Mich., Joslin is entering her senior season for Monroe High School where she is the leadoff hitter having played shortstop, third base and center field.
The daughter of Bradley Joslin and Cherie Hickman, she plans to major in physical therapy.
Oakley said: "Mazi is a heart player. She's the kind of student-athlete that is the glue of a great team. Her energy is contagious. She is enthusiastic. And on top of all that, she has a canon for an arm. She'll be able to fill in wherever we need her. Look for her to compete for the third base position that opens up next year."
Joslin said on choosing UND: "I chose UND for the opportunity to get a good education and play college softball."
Jaclyn Lilek - Utility
A senior at Minooka Community High School, Lilek earned 2011 and 2012 all-conference and first team all-area honors while helping her team to a Southwest Prairie Conference championship in 2011 as a third baseman and a pitcher.
An honor-roll student, she plans on majoring in physical therapy and is the daughter of Don and Kerrie Lilek.
Oakley said: "Jaclyn is another strong athlete who can play multiple positions. She has a solid stick, can hit for average with some power, and will work hard both on the field and in the classroom. She will compete for the open third base position next year."
Lilek said on choosing UND: "It is a good size, offers physical therapy and has a great softball program."
Kaylin VanDomelen - Pitcher/Utility
Vandomelen is a four-year letterwinner in softball at Banks High School in Oregon where she was named to the all-state team her freshman through junior seasons and helped lead her team to a state championship last year and a runner-up finish as a freshman. She also competed in volleyball and basketball.
An honor-roll student, VanDomelen was named her high school's student of the year and plans to major in elementary education. She is the daughter of Bill and Vicky VanDomelen.
Oakley said: "Kaylin is a complete player. She's the type of player who can lead the team from inside the circle, and also provide the game winning hit. I'm excited about her coming in right away to contribute as a pitcher, and I'm excited about what she brings to an already explosive offensive line up here at UND. She'll give both the hitters, and the opposing pitchers, something to worry about."
Rachael Waynick - Infielder
Entering her senior season at Waterford Mott High School, Waynick is a four-year letterwinner in softball and basketball. During her junior season, she was named to all-league team, earned the most valuable player award and competed in the Queens of Diamonds Showcase.
An honor-roll student, she plans to major in biology and is the daughter of Rick and Cathy Waynick.
Oakley said: "Rachael is going to surprise a lot of the Big Sky next year with her style of play. She's athletic, energetic, and hard to predict. She brings a winning attitude and the skill set to match. Look for her to make an impact right away."
Waynick said on choosing UND: "Coach is from Michigan, I love the campus and it has a great atmosphere."