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Original Issue

Dallas Escobedo

18 / PITCHER / Phoenix

Achievements: The Arizona softball player of the year, Dallas went 33--3 with 500 strikeouts as a senior at St. Mary's Catholic High in 2010 and led the Lady Knights to the Class 5-A Division I title game. As a freshman, she struck out 501 to help St. Mary's to the championship. In four years she threw five perfect games, 37 no-hitters, 76 shutouts and fanned 1,882.

First Steps: When she was six, her father, Rich, marked a strike zone on the inside of their home's front door with tape so Dallas could practice with a Nerf ball. She also learned to love the spotlight that came with pitching. "I realized everybody focuses on the pitcher," she says. "I liked the attention, and when I pitch, I feel in charge."

Evokes: Two-time world champ and 2004 Olympic gold medalist Jennie Finch. At 6' 1" Dallas is close to Finch (who's also 6' 1") in both stature and in her diverse repertoire of pitches, including a mean fastball.

Coach's Comment: "She's got a fastball that can go 70 miles per hour," says St. Mary's coach Bobby Pacheco. "She also has a good drop ball and rise ball, and she's really working hard on her changeup."

What's Next: A member of the Junior Women's National Team, Dallas will compete at the 18-and-under Pan American Softball Championship from Aug. 6 through 15 for the right to advance to the 19-U worlds in December 2011. In June she began working out with Arizona State, to which she committed as a sophomore.