Howren signs with defending JC champs
by David Royal
Jan 17, 2013 | 1190 views | 0 0 comments | 7 7 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Adairsville’s Cassidy Howren has signed a two-year athletic scholarship with Chattanooga State Community College, the defending national champions in NJCAA Division I softball.

Howren said she will be competing for the starting catcher position, which was vacated by graduation at the junior college, whose softball team, like at Adairsville, is the Lady Tigers.

“They won’t promise you a starting position, but as long as you work for it, you can earn it,” she said.

Howren said she is eager to compete for the position and play for Chattanooga State, a very successful program at the junior college level.

Chattanooga State has participated in the postseason 16 of the past 18 years. In addition to winning the national championship last year, the Lady Tigers had finished as high as third at the national level in 2008.

“They have a really good history and I want to be a part of that for the future,” Howren added. “I know it’s competitive, but I’m up for challenges.”

Chattanooga State coach Blythe Golden, who is taking over the program from Beth Keylon-Randolph, said her predecessor recruited Howren and she has watched her play and is impressed with the Adairsville player’s skills.

“I think her skills behind the plate and her athletic ability will be a tremendous asset to Chattanooga State,” she said. “She moves well behind the plate.”

Golden said Howren also is a defensive force as a catcher.

“I believe her arm will be plenty strong to take care of teams who like to run a lot,” she said. “Cassidy is a go-getter and works hard. She's a fighter and I want to have a team full of fighters.”

She said Howren also knows Maci Mills, a pitcher for the Lady Tigers, and she is looking for that relationship to be a positive.

“I believe it will help us build our batteries — our pitcher-catcher relationships,” the coach added.

Howren said she and Mills, who played for Gordon Central, are on the Georgia Combat, a travel ball team based out of Dallas.

Kandace Bruno, her Adairsville coach the past year, said Chattanooga State is getting a talented player.

“She's just a good athlete, a multi-sport athlete and can play many positions,” Bruno said. “She's very sound fundamentally and also is a good leader.”

The coach said she’s also “a phenomenal student in the classroom.”

Bruno said Howren was one of the players she wanted playing when the game was on the line.

“She was tied for the highest batting average on the team,” she said. “Cassidy drove in most of our runs and she really came through in clutch situations.”

Howren punched in 20 hits her senior year, including 17 singles, two doubles and one home run. The catcher also drove in nine runs and scored that many, too.

She coaxed nine bases on balls during the year and had a .303 batting average with an on-base percentage of .757.

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