Now a finalist for the Gatorade National Softball Player of the Year award, Verdun joins an elite alumni association of past state award-winners in 12 sports, including Alicia Hollowell (2000-01, Fairfield HS, Calif.), Derek Jeter (1991-92, Kalamazoo HS, Mich.), Candace Parker (2001-02, Naperville Central), Abby Wambach (1997-98, Our Lady of Mercy, N.Y.), Mark Sanchez (2004-05, Mission Viejo HS, Calif.), Angela Tincher (2002-03, James River HS, Va.) and Kenzie Fowler (2006-07, Canyon del Oro HS, Ariz.).
5-10 senior left-handed pitcher finished 40-0 with a 0.30 ERA this season,
leading the Coalers (40-0) to the Class 2A state championship on Saturday in East Peoria. Verdun
recorded 480 strikeouts and 10 no-hitters in 235 innings and batted .565 with
80 runs scored, 70 RBI, 19 doubles and 12 home runs this spring.