By Ed Martin, Editor
Madison Wallace
Madison Wallace

A Lemoore High School sophomore, Madison Wallace, has earned a full scholarship offer to attend the University of Detroit Mercy, a Division I program, to play softball after attending the school’s January softball camp in Detroit.

Detroit Mercy is a top-flight university and plays many of the top Division I teams in the country. However, the Titans haven’t fared too well in recent years, last year they struggled to earn a 10-40 mark.

However, the Titans hired new a new coach this year, John Conway, who takes over in Detroit after serving as head coach at Saint Leo University for the last four seasons where he racked up 116 wins during his tenure there, including a 40-16 mark in 2013 to win the Sunshine State Conference championship.

Conway told The Leader he was impressed with Wallace’s play at the January 24 camp in Detroit and immediately offered her a full scholarship. “Yes, I did offer Madison a scholarship to attend Detroit Mercy,” he said. “It is not unusual for a sophomore in high school to commit to a Division I program. She is a solid athlete and the type of player and attitude I would like to have be a part of this program.”

Lemoore High School Coach Dione Ewing said Wallace is a solid player and made the varsity team as a freshman last year. Wallace plays second base and shortstop and Ewing said she is looking forward to this season. “I am excited and looking forward to the upcoming season with my girls,” she said.

Wallace recently turned 15 years old and has been playing travel softball since she was 9 years old. She currently plays for the Firecrackers 18 Gold (a Central California team) based out of Lemoore. The team is comprised of student athletes from all across Central California, the Central Coast and beyond and includes guest players from the Midwest.

Players on this team are regarded as the top players in Central California with several players receiving college scholarships.

“I picked The University of Detroit because I've been familiar with this program since 7th grade,” said Madison.  “I had always followed this program and had a liking to them. They are a NCAA Division 1 program and they play a great schedule as well.”

She added that the University plays some of the best schools in the country. “After attending the camp and being around the players and coaches, I liked it a lot.”

She accepted the scholarship offer and is looking forward to attending the school. “For as long as I’ve been playing softball, I have always wanted to play at the collegiate level. When I first showed up at the University of Detroit I knew I was in the right place.”

Madison says she plans on studying Sociology or Social Work while at the University of Detroit. She said she chose Detroit for the superior academics, coaching staff and the fact that she has family in Detroit.

She is also looking forward to playing this season for Lemoore. “I didn’t really have a chance to play last year due to my leg injury, so I want to make up by going all out this year and just being the best me. I believe that with the team we have we can win the Valley.”

The Tigers are expected to open their season in the Edison Tiger Softball Classic, which tentatively begins Feb. 24.