Glencoe’s Rathje signs softball scholarship

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By Chris McCarthy/Editor

Jessica Rathje received a rather special present on her 18th birthday on Tuesday (Oct. 13).

The Glencoe High senior signed a letter of intent to play softball at Brenau University in Gainesville, Ga.

As the ace of the pitching staff last season, Rathje helped the Lady Yellow Jackets post a 29-5 record, gain a final regular season state ranking of fourth and reached the playback bracket finals of the Class 3A Central Regional Tournament. 

In 209 innings, Rathje finished with a 1.24 earned run average while striking out 285 batters and allowing only 27 walks. At the plate, she had a .500 batting average with 34 RBI

“This is something I’ve been working for since I was about 10,” said Rathje, who plans on majoring in special education at Brenau. “My pitching coach, Eddie McConnell, is the best coach I’ve ever had in my life, and he really helped me get to this point. I visited the [Brenau] campus last month and I love it and loved the coaches.”

Rathje is also a member of the GHS varsity basketball team and played youth soccer.

“Jessica plays a vital role in the success of the Glencoe High School softball program,” said GHS softball coach Amy Travis. “Jessica is our leader and carries the team while she is pitching. I think Jessica will be an asset to the softball program at Brenau University, and they’re very lucky to have her.”

As a member of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics, Brenau last season went 34-13 overall and 18-10 in the Southern States Athletic Conference.

“Jessica has good control and good movement with her pitches,” said Brenau assistant softball coach Gary Hatfield. “She’s a great competitor who knows how to win. But the biggest thing for me was that so many good people that I knew gave great accolades about her, not just about as a pitcher but as a person. That was probably the biggest selling point about offering her [a scholarship]. She’s the whole package – a great player and a great student who comes from a winning program.”

Rathje and her GHS softball teammates have set the bar high for the 2015 season.

“I feel that we’re state-bound this year. We did really well last season with only five losses, and I know me and the three other seniors are really excited to get back out there.”

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