On the field and in the classroom, Saline's Kaleigh McClelland is excited about Concordia University


Kaleigh McClelland at bat. photo by Mike Williamson

Saline High School senior Kaleigh McClelland is looking forward to competing and learning as a Concordia University Cardinal.

McClelland recently signed with Concordia, which she said is a place that has a great softball program and a college that’s really important to her.

The Sun Times News (STN) reached out to her to ask about this next big step.

“I was very excited to finally take my next steps with Concordia and have the opportunity to sign with a great softball program and a college that’s really important to me and my family,” she said. “My Grandparents (Tom Schroeder and the late Pam Schroeder) met, graduated and got married at Concordia in the 1970s and both my parents attended there. My dad with his Masters Degree.”

As for present day Concordia, McClelland said she, “felt so welcomed by Coach Cavanagh and the team when I visited and I knew I wanted to play softball near home and for a competitive program. Concordia was somewhere I thought I could make an impact and I am excited to come and be a part of this program. I chose Concordia for the great team feeling and culture here. I also liked that I was able to play close to home.”

Kaleigh on signing day. photo courtesy of Saline Athletics

STN asked her if it feels like the hard work has paid off.

“Absolutely!” she said. “My goal has always been to play collegiate softball and I am super excited to be able to contribute and play at the next level. I am looking forward to continuing to work hard in the years to come playing for CUAA (Concordia University Ann Arbor) and Coach Cav.”

With the excitement of looking ahead, there’s still work to be done with the Hornets softball team.

“I really enjoyed all my time with Saline, from being able to be a leader and captain on JV to playing Varsity, and am looking forward to my senior year,” she said.

McClelland was a scholar athlete last year and won the SEC Sportsmanship award.

She’s looking forward to contributing this upcoming season at third-base and at the plate, “and wherever the team needs me.”

“My favorite part of playing for Saline is how hard everyone on the team is willing to work for our goal,” she said. “Whether it was off-season weight lifting or extra lessons, everyone was willing to show up and do the work! I also love how we can be a family outside of softball and support each other with life, school, and anything we needed, they are always there to lend an ear whenever you need help.”

It’s taken a lot of dedication for her to get here and she had a lot of support and help along the way.

“So many people have helped me get to this point,” she told STN. “I am so thankful for my parents and family for supporting me all these years and encouraging me along the way and for the time they spent traveling with me, taking me to lessons and practices and helping me reach my goals. I am very thankful for all of my coaches through the years as well who believed in me, pushed me to be the best I could be, and taught me how to work hard and set goals and push to be 1 percent better every day. From little league, to middle school, high school, and travel ball I have had so many awesome coaches (Magen Larsen, Dave Olsen, Chris Ostrowski, Steve Clark, Glen Darmos, James Poe, Mike Lee, Alisa Robison, Todd and Taylor Coon, Jim Priebe, Katie Smith, Laura Vaccaro, and McKenzie Long) and each of them taught me so much and helped me to get to this point. I am very grateful. I also thank God for everything He has blessed me with.”

McClelland at ready in the field. photo by Mike Williamson
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