Ferris State Signs Two More High School Standouts

The Ferris State University softball program had added two more high school student-athletes to its 2009 recruiting class as Dana Bowler (Lockport, Ill./Township) and Liz Hamming (Hudsonville) have announced their intentions to play softball for the Bulldogs, starting with the 2009 fall season. The announcement was made by 12th-year FSU head coach Keri Becker.

The two join fellow signees Elaine "Lainee" Clay (Wheelersburg, Ohio) and Morgan Kramerich (Crest Hill, Ill./Lockport Township) to comprise Ferris' 2009 recruiting group.

"Overall, this recruiting class provides exactly what we need to carry on the success of Bulldog Softball," said Becker, who's currently in her 12th year at Ferris State. "Dana Bowler and Liz Hamming will help carry on the Bulldog Legacy of having a great battery. Not only can these women play the game well, but they will also fit the personality of the team. We are excited to have these student-athletes and their families join our softball family this fall."

Bowler, a pitcher, earned All-Southwest Suburban Blue Conference and second-team all-area accolades at Lockport (Ill.) Township High School during her 2008 junior season. A three-year varsity team starter, Bowler posted an 11-3 record with a 1.69 earned run average (19 earned runs allowed) in 78-plus innings this past season. A starter in 12 of her 16 2008 appearances, the 5-9 hurler recorded 111 strikeouts while notching three shutouts and turning in seven complete-game performances. As a sophomore in 2007, she went 7-5 in the pitching circle with two saves and had a 1.48 earned run average (14 earned runs allowed) in 66 innings of work. Bowler also registered 72 strikeouts, three shutouts and five complete-game efforts as a starter in 10 of her 22 outings. She was 12-0 with a 1.25 earned run average and 134 strikeouts in 75 innings for the 2006 campaign.

Dana Bowler
Liz Hamming
Bowler, a prep teammate of Morgan Kramerich, has played a pivotal role in helping LTHS to a pair of league titles (2006 and 2008) and a regional championship (2008) under head coach Marissa Chovanec. A National Honor Society member, Bowler has also been involved in her school's student government and the Interact Club programs.

The daughter of Mike and Joan Bowler of Lockport, Ill., Dana will graduate this spring 2009 and is interested in studying biology at Ferris State.

"Our first (recruiting) priority was to go out and find a pitcher that could be a difference maker right away and I'm confident we have found that in Dana," said Becker, who owns the distinction of being FSU Softball's all-time winningest coach. "Command, velocity, and composure are the words I would use to characterize Dana. She will be a great addition to our pitching staff."

A catcher, Hamming was a first-team all-state, all-region, and All-O.K. (Ottawa-Kent) Conference selection at Hudsonville (Mich.) High School as a junior last season. The 2008 team Most Valuable Player batted a .415 average with 51 base hits and 33 RBI's in 123 at bats for head coach Tom Vruggink's squad, which went 33-7 overall with a conference and district title apiece. Hamming, an all-district and The Advance Newspaper All-Area First-Team pick a season ago, produced 12 doubles, four home runs, two triples, and scored 18 runs while notching a .765 fielding percentage. As a sophomore in 2007, the 5-9 backstop batted .283 with 30 hits in 106 at bats to go with 15 RBI's, eight runs scored, and an .811 fielding percentage. The 2007 team concluded its season at 26-14 overall while capturing district, regional, and quarterfinal round championships. Hamming went one-of-three (double) at the plate in the Eagles' 2-1 2007 state tourney semifinal-round loss to Harper Woods Regina (June 15).

The daughter of Dave and Sheri Hamming of Hudsonville, Liz will graduate from HHS in the spring. She has been involved in karate for five years and is presently at the red belt level.

"Liz is the other half of a new battery that we are excited to have," stated Becker. "She possesses excellent catching fundamentals, has a strong arm, and is sound offensively."

Ferris State, which is presently ranked seventh nationally in the latest (March 11) National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA) Division II Top 25 Poll, has compiled a current 12-2 overall record this spring. Last season, FSU tied for fifth place at the 2008 NCAA-II Softball Championships after being crowned Great Lakes Regional Tourney champions.

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