Hawaii has added three new commits since the end of the fall signing period with Maryknoll alum Jedd Andrade set to come home and play for UH.
Andrade spent two years at Fort Scott Community College where he recently completed his sophomore season. Andrade, who found out Thursday he was named first-team all-conference, hit .411 with 19 doubles, two triples, six homers and 38 RBIs for the Hounds.
FRIDAY EDIT: The .386 average with nine doubles, two triples, four homers and 38 RBIs were from Andrade’s freshman year. Andrade hit .411 with 19 doubles, two triples, six homers and 38 RBIs as a sophomore.
“I feel like I’ve improved so much,” said Andrade, who played in center for the Hounds this season after moving over from right field. “The weight program here is awesome and the techniques they break down for me over here I’ve never heard of in baseball. After watching so much film from our coaches showing us how to hit like a pro athlete it just makes it a lot easier as a hitter.”
Andrade, who is listed at 5-10, was honorable mention all-state his senior year for the Spartans, who won the Division II state championship.
He received no attention from Division I schools out of high school and went the junior-college route, choosing the same JC as former Saint Louis outfielder Ka’ai Tom, who went on to play at Kentucky and is now in the minor leagues.
UH assistant Carl Fraticelli has been in touch with Andrade throughout his entire sophomore season.
“He called me up and said, ‘man, we need a left-handed hitting outfielder,'” Andrade said. “As a kid I always wanted to play under the lights at Les Murakami Stadium and have that fun experience.”
Hawaii has also secured commitments from Cuesta College right-hander Neil Uskali and Mira Costa INF/OF Zack Chan.
Uskali has started nine games with 11 appearances for Cuesta and is 7-2 with a 1.89 ERA and three complete games. Uskali has struck out 76 in 71 1/3 innings with only five walks allowed.
Chan is hitting .444 with four doubles, a homer and 17 RBIs in 19 games for Mira Costa.
Hawaii signed nine players during the fall recruiting period but won’t see all of them reach UH. A key player to watch is right-hander Nick Belzer of Des Moines Area C.C. Belzer is 8-2 with a 4.43 ERA with five complete games in 11 starts. He’s struck out 72 in 63 innings.