Pats’ Kralj signs with Wabash Valley

From Herald Staff Reports

LINCOLN CITY — Kaitlin Kralj appreciated relationships.

It’s one of the things that jumped out to the Heritage Hills senior when she first met Wabash Valley College assistant softball coach Mark Colvin at a tournament in the fall of her junior year.


The 10-minute talk she had with Colvin had nothing to do with her college decision. Just a casual chat about Kralj’s nickname, “Kat.” When she received weekly text messages from Warrior head coach Paul Schnarre, Kralj realized just how important relationships seemed to the entire Warrior staff.

So because of that bond, the school’s close proximity to home — but not too close, she kidded — the affordable cost and the esteemed Warrior softball program, Kralj signed Monday to suit up next season for the junior college in Mount Carmel, Ill.

Kralj, who hurled back-to-back no-hitters last spring and has compiled a 41-11 career pitching record, plans on studying health science with the goal of becoming a nurse or dental hygienist. The daughter of Edward and Angela Kralj of Santa Claus, Kaitlin said the prospect of using Wabash Valley as a launching pad certainly intrigues her.

“They’re known for success,” Kralj said of the Knights, who finished 38-10 last season and have produced 12 All-Americans in the past 10 years. “They have a lot of girls coming through and transfer to D-I schools.

“It will give me a little time to get bigger, better, faster, stronger so that I can use Wabash as a stepping stone to eventually reach that goal.”

Kralj recorded 156 strikeouts last season and registered a 1.98 earned run average while hitting .345 at the plate.

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