July 23, 2013
RUSTON - Mark Montgomery and the Louisiana Tech softball program has added a pair of Division I transfers in shortstop Lindsey Neyland and catcher/infielder Lexi Callan.
Montgomery and the Lady Techsters signed five high school prep stars during the early period and added a junior college signee in May as they look to replace the holes filled by the graduation of six seniors off the 2013 team that posted a winning record and the highest finish ever in the Western Athletic Conference.
Neyland comes to Ruston after spending her freshman campaign at UCF where she saw action in 34 games for the Black Knights.
"Lindsey is an amazing athlete, and we are very fortunate that she has decided to come back closer to home," Montgomery said. "She is extremely fast and has amazing defensive skills."
The former Evangel Christian Academy prepster led the Eagles to six straight district titles and back-to-back-to-back state titles in 2009, 2010 and 2011. Neyland led ECA to the state title game again as a senior but the Eagles came up short for their bid for a fourth straight title.
In addition to being named all-district six straight years, Neyland was a three-time all-state honoree and was named second team all-American in 2012 by the National Fastpitch Coaches Association. As a junior, she batted .444 with 44 runs scored and 25 stolen bases and was named the district MVP.
"When I visited Louisiana Tech, I felt like I was at home," Neyland said. "The coaches and environment gave me a comforting feeling that reminded me why I love the game. I am excited to represent Shreveport and play for Louisiana Tech."
Neyland finished her Evangel career ranked in numerous career statistical categories, including No. 1 in at bats (517), No. 1 in runs scored (184), No. 2 in hits (183), No. 2 in stolen bases (77), No. 4 in sacrifice bunts (20), No. 6 in batting average (.361) and No. 8 in on-base percentage (.452).
"Lexi is one of the strongest athletes I have ever seen," Montgomery said. "She is a former teammate of Anna Cross and brings us quality depth at both catcher and our corners."
Prior to her days in Nacogdoches, Texas, Callan was a four-year starter at Canton High School in Texas where she earned numerous accolades for her performance at the plate and in the field.
As a freshman, she earned first team all-District 14-3A honors as a catcher and then followed that up with a stellar sophomore season that saw her earn the district's Offensive Player of the Year award and a spot on the all-East Texas team.
Callan earned first team all-district honors at first base as a junior and at third base as a senior while also earning honorable mention all-state accolades. The versatile, four-sport athlete also lettered in basketball, track and field and powerlifting during her high school career.
"As soon as I visited Louisiana Tech and met the coaching staff I knew without a doubt this would be my new school," Callan said. "Not only is the campus beautiful, but you can also tell that the University is very proud and supportive of their athletes. It's not hard to see that Coach Montgomery and the rest of the softball coaches are working hard to build this program and make it something memorable. I'm so excited to get to be a part of it."
Neyland and Callan will help lead the Lady Techsters into their inaugural season as a member of Conference USA as the University made the all-sports move on July 1.
For all the latest on the Lady Techster softball program, log onto LATechSports.com. Fans can also follow through social media avenues, including Twitter updates on @LATechSB and through Facebook at facebook.com/LouisianaTechSoftball.