Dunkirk senior Khee Nance will take part in the Queen of Diamonds Showcase North at Kent State University on Jan. 5-6 in hopes of enticing Division 1 and Division 2 colleges to give her a chance at the college level.
Nance, a shortstop for the Lady Marauders, certainly has an impressive resume.
This past spring, Nance played in 14 league games and accumulated 24 runs, 17 singles, nine doubles, four triples and 21 RBIs. She was an impressive 34 for 54 (.629 batting average) at the plate.
"If I can go Division 1, I really want to, but I will go Division 2," Nance said, noting she wants to make an immediate impact on whichever school she decides to play at. "I want to play. I will play outfield if I have to."
Nance has a strong interest in Niagara, Mercyhurst and Indiana University of Pennsylvania.
"It's a college showcase where kids can come and workout for top colleges," Dunkirk softball coach John Sliwa said. "They make up teams and play games. In their free time the colleges are allowed to look and talk to the players. This is a chance to put all the kids in a competitive atmosphere to get scholarships."
One college which intrigues Nance is Niagara. After an overnight stay, Nance felt she related well to the coach and felt her philosophies are similar to Sliwa's.
"I liked the dynamic of the team," she said. "I was comfortable with the coach and players. She explained to me how she sets up her batting order and it's exactly how Sliwa sets things up."
This will be the second showcase for Nance, who participated in the softball showcase at North Collins over the summer. There, she was the fastest runner and her throw from shortstop to first base clocked in at 62 MPH.
Sliwa noted Nance is one of the top three players Chautauqua County has seen in quite some time, but also the area is not known for a hot bed in the minds of scouts.
"Hopefully we will get an offer," Sliwa said. "We know she is a diamond in the rough."
Tom Mott of Frewsburg informed Nance of the opportunity to compete in the showcase. Nance is familiar with Mott as she played travel softball for Mott this past summer, including a tournament in Virginia.
"I think it will be tough. It will be heavy competition," Nance said of the showcase. "Virginia opened my eyes. It was a lot of talent there. You can see a different dynamic of how competitive they are. It's exciting to see what I really have."
Part of the process at the showcase is players telling the coaches why they feel they would be a perfect fit for the coach's program.
"Leadership," Nance responded when asked what she can bring to a team. "I have that natural leadership and I am able to lead by example. I definitely have speed. I am a scrappy batter and smart on the bases."
Nance, who looks to major in psychology, is already looking forward to her senior year for the Lady Marauders.
"It's all or nothing this year," she said. "Everything is on the line. The past few years I knew I was coming back. Now I know I am not coming back and I want to make a statement and a name for myself at this school."