Republished from the Jefferson City News Tribune
WESTPHALIA — Sammey Bunch didn’t leave many boxes unchecked in her four years as a Fatima softball player. Four all-state nods, a state championship in 2014, a second-place finish in 2015 — not to mention a state-record 71 hits her senior season.
Bunch inked the start of the next stage of her softball career Wednesday, when she signed a letter of intent to play at Northern Iowa.
“I think she’ll do great there. I really do,” Fatima softball coach Dana Scheppers said. “They’re getting a very good athlete, a very good person, so hopefully she can continue her success at the D-I level.”
The shortstop homered in all four of Fatima’s games in the state championship tournament this year. The Lady Comets defeated Blair Oaks, Centralia and Iberia in the tournament before falling to Lathrop. Fatima beat Pleasant Hope in the 2014 title game.
“It’s been a lot of fun,” she said. “We’ve been a very successful school the past couple of years. It’s been a blast.”
Scheppers said Bunch decided to become a Panther in the middle of last season. Bunch said it was a hard decision, but she made the right one.
“All the coaches are amazing, and the school’s amazing and really pretty,” she said. “And I have family up there, so that always helps.”
Bunch, who also plays basketball for Fatima, has been surrounded by softball since she was young and being “dragged” to her older sister’s tournaments. She began playing travel ball at 8 or 9 years old with Mid-Missouri Ricochet, before playing for the Madness and the Stealth. Her travel-team coaches were on hand Wednesday for her signing.
At Fatima, Bunch was a starter all four years. Scheppers said she finished her career with a batting average above .580.
“I mean, it’s unreal what she has accomplished in her four years,” Scheppers said.