April 23, 2012

Iwasaki Inks Two Hurlers To NLI

By R.D. SPIEHS and HEATHER KENNEDY
UNCBears.com

During the spring signing period, the Northern Colorado baseball team signed two additional players to National Letters of Intent, announced Head Coach Carl Iwasaki on Monday.

“Our major focus was pitching during this recruiting signing,” said Iwasaki. “Derek Neeper and Josh Wagner address our needs. We are excited to have these players as UNC Bears."

Derek Neeper becomes the second signee from Northeastern Junior College in Sterling, joining Nick Miller who inked during the early signing period in November. Neeper is a right-handed pitcher who graduated from Mountain View High School in Loveland, Colo., and has compiled an 8-2 record with a 3.32 ERA at Northeastern. He also has struck out 73 and walked just 11 in 53 innings of work this season.

"Neeper is a strong young man with plus command and a swing and miss curveball," stated Iwasaki. “With the graduation of a big chunk of our pitching staff, we are definitely happy to have Neeper joining us.”

Josh Wagner is a right-handed pitcher who hails from Valencia, California. He is currently pitching at Weatherford College in Texas and has a 2-0 record with a 3.97 ERA.

"Josh is a California native who can throw four pitches for strikes,” said Iwasaki. “He could contend for a spot in our weekend rotation immediately. His fastball is constantly in the upper 80's while topping out in the low 90's.”

The Bears also signed four during the fall signing period. In addition to Miller, Iwasaki inked Lucas Corrick, a right-handed pitcher from Green Mountain High School via North Central Texas College, Matthew Loutzenhiser, a southpaw from Ponderosa High School and infielder Tyler Kimbrough from Salpointe Catholic High School in Tucson, Arizona. The team also expects to add several more players in the coming weeks.