Four members of the Lady Red Softball team will step up to the plate and continue playing softball at the collegiate level.

The four, Kianna Pellegrino, Jaden Blaise Redus, Macee Barnes and Emma Fields, were honored on Friday, Nov. 16, with a quadruple signing at Grove High School. 

For Head Coach Jeremy Collins, the four players represent his 11th through 14th, players to sign to play collegiate ball since he became head coach in 2010. 

Pellegrino and Barnes also represent the 21st and 22nd, respectively, players to be picked for All-State Softball honors from Grove High School.

Collins told those gathered at the event he was proud of these players, saying it was the first time since 2010 four from a single class signed to play college ball.

"This is a credit to their amount of work and time," Collins said. "All of them are great students, great softball players and great athletes. 

"They do a great job representing us on the softball field and a great job representing Grove as well."

Grove Athletic Director Richard Bassett agreed. 

"For the size of the school, it's not often you have four young ladies sign at the same time to play at the next level," Bassett said. "It reflects well on our athletic department and our softball program."

Meet the Players

• Kianna Pellegrino

 Kianna Pellegrino, the daughter of Misty Deaton and Michael Pellegrino, will continue her softball career at Pittsburg State University in Pittsburg, Kansas.

Pellegrino jokes that her path to Pitt State began as she grew up watching her aunt, and assistant softball coach, Haley Deaton, play for the team.

"I was always at Pitt State, on campus and at softball games," Pellegrino said. "It's not to small or too big and I really like the coaching staff."

While playing for the Division 2 school, Pellegrino plans to pursue a career in the medical field, joining her mother, a dentist, and her father, a flight medica.

She said being a member of the INTEGRIS Grove Hospital board has exposed her to numerous careers, including that of an anesthesiologist.

Pellegrino said it's been a mixture of fun and hard times, having her aunt serve as her assistant softball coach.

"At times she's harder on me and we butt heads, but most of the time we get along," Pellegrino said with a laugh. "She's taught me how to have fun and have a good attitude."

Pellegrino stepped onto the field at the age of 6, when she played t-ball. Since then she's spent every summer and fall playing softball.

She loves how the sport provides both a team atmosphere, as well as a chance for individual players to shine. 

She also likes the pace of the game, and how players can not only have fun while competing, but can also "hype each other up."

"Everyone comes together," Pellegrino said. "You couldn't do this all by yourself. There are eight other people out there, to help you."

Pellegrino said she's learned a lot from the team's coaching staff, including how to have a good work ethic.

She said she learned that it takes practice every day, on and off the field, to remain a strong player.

"If you work hard, it all pays off in the end," Pellegrino said. "Collins taught me to work hard, to win and go out and show them what I can do - then leave it all on the field."

Pellegrino said she dreams of earning an national championship while at Pitt State.

"I want to keep going as far as I can," Pellegrino said.

Earning All State recognition at Grove, she said, is a big accomplishment.

"It means I'm one of the best people in the state," Pellegrino said. "That I did everything right."

Pellegrino said she's grateful for her family - which includes her parents, at least 10 cousins, three aunts and an uncle. 

"They come to everything," Pellegrino said. "They are always there, every single one of them. I'm thankful they come and support me."

• Macee Barnes

Macee Barnes, the daughter of Shelly and John Barnes, plans to play Division 1 softball at Oklahoma State University in Stillwater.

Barnes said she picked the school after going on an unofficial visit, and attending a few fall camps.

"It felt like home," Barnes said. "I knew it was the place I wanted to be."

She jokes that her family - die-hard Sooner fans - will have to learn how to cheer for OSU, at least while she's on the softball field.

At this point, Barnes said she's undecided on a major, but is considering pursuing a career in the medical field. Possible careers include nursing or becoming a dental hygienist. 

Barnes began playing t-ball at the age of 4. At the age of 8, she skipped coaches league and went straight to the 10 and under softball.

She likes the game because of its team aspect.

"It's not just about one person, but how each position work together," Barnes said. "Each position is similar, yet different.

"We all have to do our own jobs to make the team."

Barnes said she also likes the competitive nature of the game.

She started dreaming about playing college softball - specifically Division 1 ball - at the age of 10, because it's the highest level available.

"I wanted to see if I was really meant to be Division 1," Barnes said.

Her goal became a reality as she verbally signed to play with OSU early in her high school career.

"I went for a visit and knew I wanted to go to OSU," Barnes said. "I didn't want to play games. I knew where I wanted to go. 

"I wanted to figure out that part of my life, get it set in stone and then begin to work to get better for the OSU program."

Barnes said she's learned multiple lessons on the field at Grove, including multiple life lessons from Collins.

She said the game against Tuttle, her junior year, remains etched in her memories. 

"It was a turning point in my career and a turning point for the team," Barnes said. "It's when we started to think 'wow, we can go on to the state tournament.'"

Barnes said being named All State this year is an accomplishment which has great meaning.

"It is a moment to see how other people view me and recognize my hard work," Barnes said. 

Ultimately, Barnes said, she wants to continue getting better as a player. She dreams of becoming a starter for the OSU team.

"I'm thankful for my parents for everything they have done for me throughout the sport," Barnes said. 

• Jaden Blaise Redus

Jaden Blaise Redus, the daughter of Amy and James Brady Redus, plans to play softball for Butler Community College in El Dorado, Kansas.

She picked the school after visiting with the coaching staff and meeting her potential teammates.

"The atmosphere was really nice," Redus said. "I liked the program and what the coaches teach, as well as their philosophy. 

"It was a perfect fit. It didn't feel like I would be overwhelmed."

Butler is a Division 1 - Junior College. In 2016 and 2017, the team won the national championship, and in 2018 it came in third place.

After receiving her associates degree at Butler, Redus hopes to pursue a legal career, potentially going into criminal law.

Redus began playing softball at the age of 8, probably she said due to sibling rivalry.

"My sister (Kai) played softball and because she played, I wanted to play," Redus said. "Before that I danced."

Redus said the competitive nature of softball drew her to the game. 

"I also like getting to know my teammates, with the team bonds and friendships we form," Redus said.

She said Collins taught her an important lesson involving listening.

"He said always buy into the program and listen to my coaches," Redus said. "He said you have to believe in what the coaches are saying - which played a role in how I picked schools."

Ultimately, Redus hopes she continues to become a stronger, better player. She would like to pursue playing at a Division 1 college after earning her associates at Butler.

She said she remains grateful to her parents and sister, for helping her achieve her softball dreams.

"My sister pushed me to be better," Redus said. "She helped me with competition. My parents got me to everything."

Another lesson Redus will take away from her time at Grove involves dealing with errors.

"I learned to brush mistakes off my shoulders and let things go," Redus said. 

• Emma Fields

Emma Fields is the daughter of Lacey and Dustin Fields. She plans to play for Fort Scott Community College, in Fort Scott, Kansas.

Fields picked Fort Scott for a variety of reasons, but mainly because of its agricultural and pre-medicine programs. 

While undecided, Fields is leaning towards doing something within the agricultural field.

"I was raised on a farm and in this lifestyle," Fields said. "I have been in FFA and love being around cattle."

The Fields have a commercial cattle operation outside of Grove.

"The college felt like home," Fields said, adding that she was made welcome by everyone from potential team members to the coaches and administrators.

Fields began playing t-ball at the age of 4. She's continued the sport through the years, including playing both for Grove and travel ball.

"I like being part of a family within the team," Fields said. "I like the team bonding, and being around the other girls."

Playing for Fort Scott, she said, allowed her to keep playing ball past high school.

"I didn't want it to end my senior year," Fields said. "So I took this opportunity and ran with it."

Fields said being part of the Lady Red has taught her many lessons - including one involving community support.

"Everywhere we go, people are being supportive, whether it's regionals or state, it's all about us," Fields said. "I've been to state two years in a row now, and people were with us every step of the way."

Outside of sports, Fields is involved with the Grove FFA Chapter, where she serves on the officer team as the chaplain. 

She dreams of not only being financially stable as an adult, but also owning a big ranch filled with cattle.

She may consider playing college ball after graduating from Fort Scott, but says it will depend upon God's will for her life.

"I'm grateful for everything, my family and my high school friends," Fields said, adding she will always stay connected with her Grove teammates. "The bond, this family, I know all of the girls on the softball team have my back. I count on them for everything."

Just the stats: Career stats for the Lady Red

• Kianna Pellegrino

Pittsburg State University, Pittsburg, Kansas

Career Stats

154 runs scored, 188 hits, 95 RBI’s, 64 Doubles, 20 Triples, 6 HR’s, .495 on base percentage, .409 Batting Average

Accomplishments

4 year starter

Lady Red Offensive player of the year 2015, 2016, 2018

Lady Red Defensive player of the year 2017

4 time All-district player

Offensive player of the year District 4A-6 2018

Defensive player of the year District 4A-6 2017

All region selection 2018

All State Selection 2018 (21st All State selection for Lady Red Softball)

• Blaise Redus

Butler Community College, Butler, Kansas

Career Stats

87 runs scored, 139 hits, 94 RBI’s, 39 Doubles, 4 HR’s, .400 on base percentage, .328 Batting Average

Accomplishments

4 year starter

Lady Red Ridgerunner Award winner 2015, 2016

Lady Red Defensive player of the year 2018

3 time All-district player

All region selection 2018

• Macee Barnes

Oklahoma State University, Stillwater

Career Stats

142 runs scored, 198 hits, 119 RBI’s, 66 Doubles, 25 Triples, 14 HR’s, .476 on base percentage, .430 Batting Average

Accomplishments

4 year starter

Lady Red Offensive player of the year 2017

Lady Red Defensive player of the year 2015,2016,2018

4 time All-district player

Player of the Year District 4A-6 2017

Defensive player of the year District 4A-6 2018

All region selection 2018

All State Selection 2018 (22st All State selection for Lady Red Softball)

• Emma Fields

Fort Scott Community College

Career Stats

93 runs scored, 116 hits, 57 RBI’s, 17 Doubles, .403 on base percentage, .314 Batting Average

Accomplishments

4 year starter

Lady Red Ridgerunner Award winner 2017, 2018

2 time All-district player

Helped lead our team to 108 wins during their career, district champs 2017, regional champs 2017 & 2018, State tournament 2017 & 2018 (14th and 15th time in the state tournament for Lady Red Softball).