LEBANON — McKendree University baseball coach Jim Boehne has announced that four players have committed to the Bearcat program during the fall signing period, including one that is very familiar to the McKendree coach.
Tyson Boehne, the youngest child of the Bearcats' head coach, is one of the newcomers that will join the McKendree baseball program in 2013-14. Tyson Boehne is joined by Carlyle High School teammate Kyle Jackson along with Brad Groleau of St. Bede Academy in northern Illinois and Dylan Salsman of Francis Howell High School in St. Louis on the Bearcats' early signing list.
Boehne, who is a three-sport star at Carlyle, has enjoyed a solid three-year career with the Indians. Boehne hit .382 as a junior in 2012 with three home runs and 24 runs batted in. On the mound, Boehne was 3-3 with a 2.75 earned-run average in 43 innings pitched. He has been a three-time All-Conference honoree in the Cahokia Conference.
"Tyson will be a versatile player for us," said Boehne. "He wants to be a position player at McKendree -- as he has at Carlyle -- but is also a solid right-handed pitcher. We will bring him in as an infielder but could possibly play all over the field for us. He's a pretty good hitter and we feel that he will be able to adjust to the college game. We're excited for him."
Jackson has also been a solid contributor during his career at Carlyle. He batted .358 during his junior season with two homers and 16 RBI. A left-handed hitting catcher, Jackson earned All-Cahokia Conference accolades in 2012.
"Kyle is a warrior," said Boehne. "He is a competitor and knows what it takes to win. He has improved each year and has so much potential that his best days are definitely yet to come. Kyle has a big frame and hits from the left side, which is definitely something we are excited about. He's also caught almost every inning over the last three years at Carlyle and has some pop in his bat. There's no telling how good Kyle can be during his college career."
Groleau, like Boehne, has starred in three sports during his playing days at St. Bede. Groleau had a memorable junior season for the Bruins as he hit .485 with an on-base percentage of .560. He added eight triples, two home runs and 42 runs batted in over 29 games. Groleau, a left-handed hitting outfielder, was named as the Bureau County Republican Baseball Player of the Year for his efforts. He is also a two-time North Central Illinois Conference All-Conference honoree.
"Brad is a fantastic athlete," said Boehne. "He is a strong guy who is exactly what we are looking for in the fact that he can hit and is a plus runner. We need some left-handed hitting in our program and he is a player that is tailor-made for our field. Brad has a bright future and we expect him to compete for a job when he arrives at McKendree."
A left-handed pitcher, Salsman appeared in a team-high 13 games for Francis Howell as a junior in 2012. Salsman posted a 3-0 record with an ERA of 3.00 in 32 2/3 innings of work for the Vikings. Salsman worked mainly as a reliever for Francis Howell with just four starts over his 13 games on the mound.
Dylan is a big lefty that can give us a lot of options," said Boehne. "He has had a chance to contribute in a big program at Francis Howell, and the fact that he has worked both as a starter and reliever is definitely a plus. Dylan has a high ceiling and we're excited that he is coming to our program."
The McKendree University baseball team will be competing in its first season as members of the Great Lakes Valley Conference in 2013. The Bearcats posted a 14-31 record playing an independent schedule in 2012.