Four Craig athletes sign collegiate letters of intent

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John Barry
Thursday, November 9, 2017

JANESVILLE--Janesville Craig’s baseball program hit the trifecta Wednesday.

Jacob Campbell, Noah Berghammer and JJ Brennan signed national letters of intent to play collegiately.

Campbell, an all-state first-team catcher last season, signed with the University of Illinois.

Berghammer, who will be a four-year varsity player, signed with the University of Minnesota.

And Brennan signed with NAIA Judson University in Elgin, Illinois.

Campbell and Berghammer have both been part of three straight Big Eight championship teams and saw action as freshmen at the WIAA state tournament during the Cougars’ run to the Division 1 title in 2015 and to the state quarterfinals a year later.

“I’ve been around these guys since they were 9 years old,” Craig coach Victor Herbst said of his talented trio. “It just goes to show you what happens when you work hard and do things the right way. Good things happen.

“There’s nothing more rewarding as a coach than to watch your guys go on to play at college. And all three of them have proven they’re good enough to do that.”

Campbell is coming off a spectacular season in which he was one of five finalists for the state player of the year and was named The Gazette’s player of the year. The son of Patrick and Cari, he verbally committed to Illinois a year ago.

“I’m taking my official visit this weekend, but I liked everything about the program and the campus early on,” Campbell said. “I’m in a good spot, I think, where I can go in as a freshman and hopefully get a chance to play right away.”

Berghammer dreamed from an early age of playing college baseball and will now get the chance. The son of Mike and Jean Berghammer, he has played multiple positions for Craig and believes Minnesota will use him in the same capacity.

“I’m going in as a middle infielder at either second base or shortstop, but they said they really liked my versatility,” Berghammer said. “I’ll continue to work hard and let the process take care of itself.”

Brennan, the son of Jim and Robyn, had a strong summer playing baseball and caught the eye of the Judson coaching staff at a tournament. He liked the offer he got from the NAIA Division II school and jumped at the chance to play at the next level.

“There will be 20 seniors graduating after this year, so I hope I can go in and be a part of the playing rotation next year,” Brennan said.

Donagan signs with Oakland

The three baseball players were not the only ones to sign a letter of intent Wednesday.

Craig senior Erin Donagan inked her name on the dotted line to swim at Oakland University in Rochester, Michigan.

Donagan is a four-time state qualifier in swim and will cap off an illustrious prep career Saturday at the WIAA Division 1 state meet in Madison.

Donagan, the daughter of Tim and Lynn, picked Oakland over a number of other Division I and II offers.

“I’m just excited about the opportunity to continue swimming at a great school,” Donagan said. “I’ve been swimming for a long time, so it’s nice to know that all the hard work paid off.”

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