May 29, 2007
ATLANTA – After leading Georgia Tech to a school record 54 wins, Caitlin Lever signed to play with the Chicago Bandits in the National Pro Fastpitch (NPF) league, announced on Tuesday. Lever, a native of Amherst, N.Y., joins former Yellow Jacket All-American Jessica Sallinger on the Bandits.
“I was thrilled after hearing that Chicago was interested in signing me,” said Lever. “It’s exciting to be playing alongside some of the game’s greats in Jennie Finch, and to also play with Jessie (Sallinger).”
Lever had one of the most successful senior campaigns in Jacket history. She set a new school record with 94 hits, third most in Atlantic Coast Conference history. The outfielder also posted a .452 batting average, second best in Tech history, and fourth overall in ACC history.
“Caitlin had a tremendous season for us this year and we wish her the best in the professional ranks,” said first-year Tech Coach Sharon Perkins. “She has a great work ethic and will bring a lot to the table for the Chicago organization.”
A three-time All-ACC selection, Lever was named to the NFCA All-Southeast Region first team this season. She finished 2007 with a career-high 20 doubles, 11 home runs, and 60 runs batted in. Lever’s season totals in hits, runs scored (63), RBI, total bases (155), slugging percentage (.745) and on base percentage (.526) rank in the top 10 in ACC single-season history.
Lever was also named to the 2007 ACC All-Tournament Team, after helping the Yellow Jackets make it to the ACC Championship Game, a 2-0 loss to top-seeded Virginia Tech. She was a top 10 Finalist for USA Collegiate Softball Player of the Year and ranked in the top 10 in the country in batting average.
She becomes just the third Yellow Jacket to play in the NPF League. Tara Knudsen (2001-04) was the first after being drafted by the New England Riptide in 2004. Sallinger (2002-05) signed with the Bandits last season after being selected in the second round of the NPF Senior Draft her senior season. Sallinger went 7-5 last year with the Bandits, with three saves and posted a 1.62 earned run average.
Lever and Sallinger will begin their season today as the Bandits travel to Rockford, Ill, for a four-game series with the Thunder, May 29-June 1. For more information on the Bandits, please go to their team website at www.chicagobandits.com.