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Addie Barnard has a knack for hitting home runs.

Now the Beatrice sophomore has found a softball home away from home after she graduates. Last week, Barnard committed to play at Wichita State.

"The coaches were really personable and easy to talk to," Barnard said. "And the place seemed very homely."

The Shockers will be getting one of the state's top hitters, and one who is taking aim at the state record books. Barnard hit 14 home runs as a freshman and followed with a state-record-tying 19 homers as a sophomore.

That brings her career total to 33. The career all-class state record is 40, currently held by former Lincoln Southeast standout Madison Otte, who is playing at Nebraska-Omaha. Lincoln Southwest's Emma Kauf has 37 career homers. Barnard still has two seasons left. Her 33 career homers are already a Class B state record.

Barnard earned first-team Class B all-state honors after hitting .652 with 12 doubles, 51 RBIs and 47 runs scored as a sophomore. She's also pitches, but a stress fracture kept her out of the circle most of last season.

Barnard, who also is a key contributor for the Lady Orange in basketball, said she will not pitch in college. She'll likely play middle infield in Wichita.

Barnard, who plays club ball for Nebraska Gold, took an unofficial visit to Wichita State in November.

"It really shook me when there were so many people at the (Wichita State men's) basketball game, how they appreciate their sports programs, and all the students come out to support," Barnard said. "It just felt like an environment I wanted to be in."

Barnard is the second-known Nebraska prep softball player committed to the Shockers. Millard South standout Bailey Urban, a junior, committed to WSU last summer.


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