Versatile Player Returns to Akron for her 2nd Season as a Professional Player
AKRON, OH – January 15, 2015 - The Akron Racers, GM, Joey Arrietta announced today that former Tulsa All-American, Jill Barrett will return to the Racers line-up for the 2015 season.
“Jill Barrett is an athlete and she demonstrated that by playing in five different spots on the diamond, including first base, where she had never played until her rookie season as a pro,” describes Arrietta. “She is that kind of player that makes things happen and I’m thrilled that she is on our program.”
“I am super excited to start my second season with the Racers as the team feels like another home,” noted Barrett. “The atmosphere of the whole Racer's organization makes every day feel like a blessing. I am excited for the expansion of the new Dallas Charge team to join the NPF and create more competition and opportunities for the league.”
In her rookie season, Barrett proved to be not only one of the top first-year players in the NPF, but one of the top defensive players in the entire league, highlighted by her .981 fielding percentage and only three errors. She accomplished that distinction playing in the infield and outfield, while fielding in five different spots on the diamond.
“For the upcoming season I always challenge myself to do better than what I've done before. A personal goal of mine is to compete for the ALL-NPF Team,” explains Barrett. ”This means I am doing my job for my team and the Racers as an organization.” She further noted that, “The 2014 team could move mountains and we came close to doing that. My hope this team comes out with the same focus and intensity as last year. If we compete as we did there is no doubt in my mind we can reach our ultimate goal of NPF Champions.”
“Working with the community and giving back to those around us is very important to our team. Akron has such a huge fan base and it is so important to us to give back to the ones wanting to learn and grow. Through camps and festivities we try and teach/develop players who are willing to learn. The NPF as a whole does a great job of growing the community and sparking softball interests in little ones just as it once did for me when I was younger.”
Drafted 15th overall in the 2014 NPF Draft out of the University of Tulsa, Jill made her Racers debut against the Chicago Bandits on May 29th, helping the Racers secure a 4-0 victory.
Barrett also held her own at the plate throughout her rookie campaign, registering a .315 clip and eight doubles, good for third in the entire league. “This year I hope to improve in all aspects of the game. I'm not perfect but I am going to strive every day in practice to be the best player I can be. I will be working on infield and outfield drills this spring to better all aspects of my defensive game. Offensively, I have been developing a stronger swing to generate more power at the plate.”
A native of Greenwood, Arkansas, Jill played her college softball at the University of Tulsa while majoring in exercise and sport science. While playing for the Golden Hurricanes, Jill never missed a start. She also was the only player in Tulsa history to register a .400 batting average twice.
About the Akron Racers
The Akron Racers, headquartered in Akron, OH, are the oldest existing team in the National Pro Fastpitch (NPF) league. The Racers competed in the Women's Pro Softball League (WPSL) for two seasons in 1999 and 2000 and in the NPF since 2004. Historic Firestone Stadium is home to the Racers and numerous amateur events at all levels of play. The Racers kick-off their 14th season of play in 2015.
About National Pro Fastpitch
National Pro Fastpitch is headquarted in Nashville, TN. The league, created to give elite female fast pitch players the opportunity to pursue a professional career in their chosen sport, has operated since 1997 under the names of Women's Pro Fastpitch (WPF) and Women's o Softball League (WPSL). NPF is the official Development Partner of Major League Baseball in the category of women's fast pitch softball since 2002. www.profastpitch.com.