Escalon High School junior Chardae Hoskins, a pitcher and shortstop for the varsity Lady Cougars softball team, recently signed a National Letter of Intent to attend Simpson University in Redding in the spring of 2018. She signed the letter alongside Hilmar High School junior McKenzie Martinez, a catcher and second baseman for the Lady Yellowjackets.
Several coaches and family members were in attendance at the signing ceremony at The Academy, Rainbow Fields. Pitching instructor for Hoskins is Jimmy Dyson, A League of Our Own, and Martinez often comes to catch Hoskins at the lessons.
The two have been playing softball for years, starting at a young age playing on their first travel team, 10U CA Grapettes, with coach Mike Boyd. At the time they were both catchers, but Hoskins decided to start pitching and Martinez was one of the first catchers for her. They went separate ways after that first season but in 2016 joined forces again with USA Elite out of Lodi with coach Vince Bunac and, while playing in Los Angles, were approached by Simpson University and asked to visit the campus. Both fell in love with the University and the coaching staff there and accepted scholarship offers to play at the Redding school.
The two said there are many coaches that have influenced them, urging them to work hard and never give up. Those who gave up countless hours and have been instrumental in their accomplishments are Mike Boyd, Phil De La Porte, Shawna and Bob Nunes, Rob Irwin, Vince Bunac, Art Brooks, Caitlin Brooks and Jeff Martinez.