Fall Signing Period Yields Commitments for Missouri State
MOST RECENTLY UPDATED: November 18, 11:55 a.m. (Click on sport links for extended releases, when available)
Men's Basketball -
Scheer, a student with a 3.95 grade-point average, was a consensus Missouri Class 4 All-State pick last season. He helped lead coach Dave Neier's St. Francis Borgia High School to a 28-3 overall record and Missouri state title last season after averaging 15.9 points and 5.0 rebounds per game as a prep junior. He also led Borgia in scoring and rebounding as a sophomore with a 17.1 scoring average to go with 5.7 rebounds. An inside/outside threat, he showed good range with 41 three-pointers last season, while posting 60 assists and 44 steals and making good on 53-percent of his field goal attempts.
Copeland helped his Fort Smith (Ark.) Northside squad to the Arkansas Class 7A quarterfinals last season, earning All-State honors and earning a spot on the State All-Tournament Team. He averaged 15.2 points per game and led his team in field goal percentage. He holds a 3.4 grade-point average and is considered an athletic player with outstanding leaping and shooting abilities. Martin calls Copeland a slasher who can make shots and play three different positions.
Cooper averaged 18.0 points and 4.1 assists as a prep junior a year ago at North Pulaski (Ark.) High. He made 82-percent of his free throws and knocked down 53-percent of his three-point field goal attempts. He is a reputable defender who uses his quickness to create offense, and has a great instinct for the game. Martin says Cooper has the potential to be a great on-ball defender which complements his skills as a scoring point guard. His father, Raymond, is also Cooper's high school and AAU coach.
Women's Basketball -
Buer led her Concordia (Kan.) High team to a perfect record and Kansas Class 4A state title as a junior in 2008-09. The 5-7 point guard was an all-state selection, averaging 20 points and shooting nearly 53 percent from the floor. She came up big for the Panthers when it mattered most, pouring home a career-high 32 points and hitting the game-winning shot in Concordia's state semifinal win over Paola. Buer followed up that effort by scoring 19 points in the title game, including a crucial three-point play in the closing minutes that propelled her club to its school-record 26th victory. Also an accomplished track athlete, Buer won the Kansas 4A individual title in the 400 meters to help the Panthers to their fifth consecutive state championship last spring.
Phillips averaged a double-double in guiding her Manassas High club to a state playoff appearance as a junior. At 5-10, Phillips has the versatility to play both inside and on the perimeter and is rated as the #69 small forward in the Class of 2010 by HoopGurlz.com.
Wilkerson, a 5-8 guard, is on pace to become the state of Missouri's all-time leading scorer in girl's basketball entering her final season at Miller (Mo.) High. She averaged 32.5 points, 8.7 rebounds and 4.4 assists in leading the Lady Cardinals to a 24-6 record and their first district championship in 2008-09. Wilkerson is a three-time Missouri Class 2 All-State and Springfield News-Leader All-Ozarks selection.
Courtney McCarter, 5-11, Middle/Right Side
Christine McCartney, 5-10, Outside hitter
Megan Schroeder, 6-1, Right Side
Schroeder was a four-year starter as an outside and right side hitter for J. I. Case High in Racine, Wis., where she was an all-conference pick three times and the Southeast Conference Player of the Year in 2009. She accumulated 554 kills as a senior and 1,287 for her career while earning third-team all-state recognition this season. Schroeder’s club team, the Wisconsin Juniors, has finished in the top 10 nationally each of the last three seasons.
Carly Thomas, 5-11, Setter
Seth Swafford, 6-0, LHP
A 6-foot, 185-pound pitcher, Swafford earned all-region and all-conference honors and was named Jefferson College Pitcher of the Year as a true freshman in 2008 before redshirting last season. In 2008, Swafford was 7-1 with a 4.10 ERA, 82 strikeouts and a .202 opponent average in 52.2 innings pitched. As a prep at Hillsboro High, he was an all-conference, all-district and all-state choice as well as the Jefferson County MVP.
Jordan Shipers, LHP
A highly sought after prospect whose high school does not play baseball, Shipers has made a name for himself at several prestigious summer and fall tournaments. The 5-11 southpaw struck out 13 batters in five shutout innings last month at the World Wood Bat Association World Championship tournament in Jupiter, Fla., playing as a member of the Sandlot/Midwest Scout Team based out of Oologah, Okla. He nearly pitched a perfect game against Oklahoma at the 2009 Sunbelt Tournament, and pitched in the Area Code Games, one of the nation’s top high school tournaments, in August 2009. Players participated in regional tryouts to be selected for one of the eight teams represented at the tournament in Long Beach, Calif.
Ryan Hafner, RHP
A 6-6, 215-pound hurler, Hafner has been a first-team all-conference pitcher the past two seasons while also earning all-conference recognition as a first baseman. Hafner’s team has posted unbeaten 10-0 conference marks the last two seasons. As a junior, Hafner went 5-2 with a 2.02 ERA. He struck out 63 batters and allowed 28 hits in 45 innings.
Patrick Drake, SS/RHP
Drake is a 6-2, 185-pound shortstop and pitcher from Webb City High. Drake helped the Cardinals to a 14-7 record last season, hitting .378 with six homers and 21 RBIs on the way to first-team all-area and all-conference honors as a shortstop. Drake led Webb City to a runner-up state finish as a sophomore and earned first-team all-conference and second-team all-area honors as a utility player. Drake also plays quarterback and defensive back for the powerful Webb City football team. He is the younger brother of Brayden Drake, MSU’s starting third baseman from 2006-09 and the 2009 MVC Player of the Year.
Conor Smith, C/IF
A high school teammate of MSU freshman outfielder Keenen Maddox at Parkway West High in the St. Louis area, Smith hit .388 as a junior with eight homers and 26 RBIs. Half of Smith’s hits went for extra bases as he accumulated an .821 slugging percentage and .518 slugging figure. Smith has been a first-team all-conference pick each of the last two seasons.
Spiker Helms, INF
A switch-hitting middle infielder, the 6-foot Helms will join the Bears from Longview Community College in Kansas City. He hit .353 for the Lakers as a freshman, driving in 29 runs with 14 extra-base hits on the way to an all-region selection. At St. Francis Borgia in Washington, Mo., Helms enjoyed a standout high school career in the field and on the mound. He hit .449 with 26 RBIs and 35 runs scored as a senior with a 7-2 pitching mark, 1.84 ERA, 61 strikeouts and a .176 opponent average. As a junior, Helms hit .397 with 21 RBIs and went 4-2 with a 2.50 ERA on the mound. Helms hit .295 with 22 RBIs as a sophomore and posted a 6-0 record and a 1.30 ERA. He was a two-time all-state and three-time all-district choice as a prep.
Ashley Brentz, IF/OF
Brentz comes to the Missouri State program with the reputation as a speedy left-handed slapper who can play a number of different positions. A three-time all-conference selection as an infielder at Parkway South High School, Brentz swiped 50 bases in her career and helped lead the Patriots to a Missouri Class 4 runner-up finish as a junior in 2008. Playing on a team that produced three Division I signees, she added all-district and all-region honors to her resume after leading South in hitting with a .450 average this past fall.
Heather Duckworth, IF
A four-sport athlete, as well as team mascot at North Mesquite High School, Duckworth is a three-time all-district performer as a corner infielder heading into her final prep season. This past spring, she was named Texas 11-5A District Offensive Player of the Year after earning a co-defensive player of the year nod the previous season. Duckworth also picked up district academic honors as a junior and played summer/fall ball for the same 18U Texas Glory Gold club that produced current MSU freshman Stevie Pierce.
Jourdan Esquenazi, P/IF/OF
Esquenazi will give the Bears another versatile weapon, but could have the chance to make an immediate impact in the circle for MSU. The right-hander was named Texas District 9-3A Pitcher of the Year in 2009, as well as Prosper High School's defensive MVP as a junior when she led her team to a regional semifinal appearance and a 26-10 overall record. The previous season, Esquenazi earned 9-3A's Utility Player of the Year honor in helping the Eagles to a district co-championship.
Savannah Wiggins, P/OF
Wiggins joins the MSU program after earning Texas District 21-4's MVP award as a junior last spring for Hargrave High School. She is expected to see immediate action in the circle for MSU, but has the offensive tools to earn a spot in Bears' lineup as well. Wiggins enters her senior year as a three-time all-district performer, two-time team MVP and academic all-district honoree. She also earned four letters in volleyball at Hargrave and played summer ball for the 18U Texas Peppers Tanel 360 club.
Men's Golf -
Langley finished fourth at the state tournament as a junior and is a three-time conference player of the year at Parkway South. He sports an extensive junior resume, including fourth place at the Missouri Golf Association Junior Championship last summer and top-five finishes at the Missouri "Big I" Championship and the Future College Golf Association Show-Me Shootout. He also won the Future Collegian World Tour's Grand Cypress Open last fall and placed sixth in the tour's Yankee Trace Open in the spring.
Welch qualfied for the U.S. Junior Amateur in 2008 and the Junior PGA Championship this past summer. He's a three-time member of the Mid-America Cup Team and has won the PGA Gateway Junior and Plantations Tour's Crescent Farms Championship since July. He also placed second at the Show-Me Shootout in September after winning it as a junior and took seventh at the MGA Junior Championship last summer. Welch is a member of the CBC High team that won the district title and qualified for the state tournament a year ago, when he finished 23rd individually.
Swimming & Diving -
Kelsey Burgin, Diving