The Rutgers softball team introduced its 2024 recruiting class on November 8. The eight new Scarlet Knights are all out-of-state students who have signed their National Letters of Intent and will come to the Banks with tons of potential.
Baileigh Burtis — Friendswood, Texas
Baileigh Burtis is an infielder from Friendswood High School in Texas. She is a part of the Strykers National Esparza club team and held a batting average of .405 as a junior.
In 2022 and 2023, Burtis received two First Team All-District Infield awards. In 2021, 2022 and 2023, she was also awarded District All-Academic Honors.
Burtis said that the second she set foot on campus, she fell in love with Rutgers.
Jayla Fuller — Conyers, Georgia
Jayla Fuller is an outfielder and utility player who will join the Knights with an impressive batting average of .535 as a junior.
Fuller currently attends Heritage High School. At Heritage High School, she was named Defensive Player of the Year, received the Rising Star Offensive MVP award and was named Four-Time All-Region.
Fuller said she loved the overall environment of the school and that everything just felt like home.
Ella Harrison — Clarence, New York
Ella Harrison is a pitcher with a phenomenal pitching record during her softball career at Clarence High School and the Beverly Bandits club team.
Harrison pitched 84 innings in 2023 and recorded a 1.50 earned run average (ERA) while striking out 134 batters. She also maintained a batting average of .382 with 19 singles, six doubles and a triple, all during the same season.
This year she was awarded the New York State Class AA Player of the Year, First Team All-Western New York and First Team All-Be.
"At Rutgers, I have the opportunity to be part of a strong and supportive academic environment while playing the game I love at a highly competitive level," Harrison said. "It's the perfect fit."
Kelsey Hoekstra — Overland Park, Kansas
Kelsey Hoekstra is lined up to play first base and pitch for the Knights next season.
Hailing from Shawnee Mission North High School, Hoekstra finished the 2023 season with a 1 ERA and 202 strikeouts in 112 innings thrown. At the plate, Hoekstra had a .476 batting average. She won Pitcher of the Year in the Sunflower League in 2023, as well as First-Team All-State in both the 2022 and 2023 seasons.
"I choose Rutgers because of the resources the school has both academically and athletically," Hoekstra said.
Jayden Hutchison — Traphill, North Carolina
Jayden Hutchison is a catcher from Traphill, North Carolina. She currently attends East Wilkes High School and plays for the Lady Lighting Gold Club.
Hutchison held a .554 batting average, a .647 on-base percentage and had 36 hits, 44 runs batted in (RBI) and 32 runs scored during her 2023 season. She was also named Three-time All-Conference, All-District and All-State.
Hutchison stated that she chose the school because it also felt like home when she got to campus, recognizing that she would be in great hands with her education and athletics.
Riley Hwang — Aldie, Virginia
Riley Hwang will join Rutgers as an infielder. Hwang plays for Lightridge High School and the EC Bullets Cornett club, and in her junior season, she hit for a .429 batting average along with a .529 on-base percentage.
She was named Female Athlete of the Year and has received awards such as All-District, All-Region and Softball MVP.
"I chose Rutgers because everything about the school and the softball program checks off every box on my list," Hwang said.
Dezaria Johnson — Covington, Georgia
Johnson plays for Eastside High School and the Virginia Unity club in Georgia. She received Region Pitcher of the Year in 2022 and was also awarded Pitcher of the Year in 2022 and 2023.
Head coach Kristen Butler said that Johnson is a fierce competitor in the circle and at the plate.
"I chose Rutgers because when I visited, it immediately felt like home," Johnson said.
Addie Osborne — Erie, Colorado
Addie Osborne will bring her skills to the field as an infielder. She attends Erie High School and plays for the Colorado Stars Gold club.
Over her softball career, Osborne has won numerous awards. She was named 5A State Player of the Year and First Team 5A All-State and Conference Player of the Year in 2023.
Osborne hit .418 with 33 hits, 37 runs, 34 RBIs and seven home runs during her junior season. She has hit for a .518 batting average so far in her senior year, scoring 41 runs, 44 hits and 58 RBIs.
The Knights are excited to welcome the new recruits for the 2024–2025 season, as they are expected to be big additions heading into the new year.
For more updates on the Rutgers softball team, follow @TargumSports on X.