Hanna Finkelstein’s softball commute will be a much shorter one this coming season.
The Richmond pitching standout headlines Simon Fraser University’s recruiting class after transferring from Long Island University Post in New York.
“With LIU Post and LIU Brooklyn merging into one Division I program following the 2019 season, I am pleased to welcome Hanna to our program,” said first-year SFU coach Michelle Peters, who happens to be a LIU alumni. “I expect her to come in and make a presence immediately on the mound, as we have two pitchers graduating this season.
“Hanna is also a utility player, does well with her bat and brings with her experience being on many successful teams. Last year, LIU Post made it to the NCAA Div. II Super Regionals and so her exposure and familiarity to that stage will help guide our team moving forward.”
In New York, Finkelstein not only excelled in the classroom but made an impact in the ballpark as a freshman.
She made 20 total appearances for the Pioneers, including 11 as a pitcher, where she compiled a 1-0 record plus one save over 22.1 innings of work. At the plate, Finkelstein had a .278 batting average with five hits and two runs scored.
Her team finished the 2018 season with a 38-19 overall record, winning the East Coast Conference Championship and advancing to the NCAA Division II Super Regionals. Finkelstein will pursue a major in Business with a concentration in marketing.
“SFU is an the opportunity to play for a competitive softball program coupled with a strong academic environment that provides ample development and career opportunities,” said the 2017 Hugh Boyd graduate. “The amazing and experienced coaching staff alongside the sense of community among the athletic community was also a large part of my decision.”
Her minor softball career included helping the White Rock Renegades win the national titles in 2015 and 2017. She also was a member of Softball Canada’s national junior team two years ago.
The SFU recruiting class also includes Surrey Storm’s Rachel Wartburton and Delta Heat’s Jessie Westsrate.
“I'm thrilled to have Hanna, Rachel and Jessie come in next year as they are going to have important roles with the SFU softball program moving forward and I can't wait to work with them," added Peters.
“Our team will certainly feel the loss of our four seniors at the end of this year - they are our captains and leaders and some of the hardest workers on the team. It was our coaching staff's focus to bring in some experienced and well-seasoned players that exemplify those traits of our seniors. I believe that all three of these newcomers will help fill that void in their own ways, immediately and seamlessly. How these athletes respond under pressure with their own performance, with their teammates and with their coaches in big games and championships is an important factor when I recruit and this trio embody that character, work ethic and resiliency."