Three Sign NLIs To Play For The Spartans

Head Coach Peter Turner announced the signing of three student-athletes to NLIs.
Dec. 8, 2014

San Jose, Calif. – San José State softball head coach Peter Turner announced the signing of three student-athletes to National-Letter-of-Intent on Monday.

The three are Ashley Penney of Victoria, British Columbia, Alyssa Avila of Fresno, Calif. and Alexandra Luna of San Jose.

“When you look at different grades of student-athletes that we recruit, these three are blue-chip players,” said Coach Turner.  “We believe these young ladies could have gone anywhere in the nation, but we are very glad they have chosen San José State for the next phase of their academic and athletic life.” 

Penny, a right-handed pitcher and outfielder who bats from the right side, will graduate from Lambrick Park Secondary School in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada in 2015.  She competes for the White Rock Renegades.  Among her recent accomplishments, she was the winning pitcher on the 2013 U16 Canadian National Championship team and earned MVP honors for her efforts.  Last year, in the U18 division, her team was the Bronze Medalist in the Canadian National Championship.  An addition, her teams have finished in second and third place in the U16 and U14 Canadian Nationals in 2012 and 2011, respectively.   

“Ashley is one of the most talented all-around athletes I have ever recruited,” Coach Turner said.  “She is a very talented pitcher, hitter and can play the outfield as well.” 



Luna is a three-year starter on the Pioneer High School (San Jose, Calif.) softball team (coach Ernie Garcia), heading into her senior campaign.  Last year she guided her team to the Blossom Valley Athletic League (BVAL) Mt. Hamilton Division Championship and in doing so earned Junior of the Year and first-team All-BVAL honors.  The Mustangs finished 24-5, 13-1 in league play, and Luna hit .475 with a .550 obp.  In 29 games she had 39 hits and knocked in 25 runs.  She was also named the team’s Offensive Player of the Year.   Following her sophomore campaign Luna was named a second-team All-BVAL performer.  In 2011-12 she earned team Freshman of the Year honors.  Luna plays club ball for the California Riptide (coaches Darryl Simon and Thomas Andalon).

“We looked at our needs and knew we had to upgrade our catching,” said Coach Turner.  “Alexandra will bring us power from the right side and an exceptional arm behind the plate.  It’s important to have local players want to come to San José State.  We want to be the first team they think about when they are looking at universities in the Bay Area. Alexandra is one of those local products that we are pleased decided to stay home and compete for the Spartans.”

Avila heads into her senior campaign as a three-year varsity letter winner at Central High School in Fresno (coach Scott Gorton).  She has led the team in RBI in each of the last two seasons and has a lifetime batting average of .317 with 77 hits, 54 RBI and has caught 58 percent of wood be base stealers.  Her team went 27-8 last season and Avila earned first-team All-Tri-River Athletic Conference (TRAC) and Defensive Player of the Year honors.  As a sophomore she as first-team All-TRAC, first-team All-Fresno Bee, all-valley and Offensive Player of the Year and League Co-MVP honors.

“Alyssa is incredibly talented defensive catcher,” said coach Turner.  “She also can handle the bat and will thrive on our system.

“This is probably the most talented class that we have had, in terms of filling immediate needs.  Once our fans see these athletes on the field, they will be as excited as I am about this crop of new Spartans.”