Henning twins sign with Indiana State

Photo by Greg Eans, Messenger-Inquirer.com | geans@messenger-inquirer.com Owensboro Catholic High School softball players Isabella Henning, left, and Danielle Henning talk in the media room at the high school Wednesday during their signing ceremony to attend Indiana State University.

It's a packaged deal for the Sycamores.

Owensboro Catholic High School senior softball stars and twin sisters, Danielle and Isabella Henning, celebrated their signing with Indiana State University on Wednesday in the OCHS media center.

ISU is getting a pair of potent hitters who have been monumental forces in the lineup of Lady Aces coach Jeremy Phelps for the past two seasons.

"We took a visit to Indiana State and we really enjoyed it," said Danielle, who was born one minute ahead of her sister. "We felt at home, we received an offer, and that led to this.

"Playing NCAA Division I softball has always been a dream, and it's taken a lot of hard work and dedication to get to this point. It will take even more hard work and dedication to succeed at the next level -- I'm very excited about the opportunity."

Last season as a junior, Danielle batted .364 with four home runs and 20 RBIs from the Lady Aces' leadoff spot. As a sophomore, she hit .426 with seven homers and 28 RBIs.

As a junior, she was All-9th District, All-State, and she participated in the Kentucky Juniors East-West All-Star Game.

"She's clutch," Phelps said of Danielle. "She's very driven, competitive at whatever she's doing. The bigger the moment, the better she plays. She can handle the spotlight -- she wants the spotlight."

And Danielle doesn't care where the Sycamores decide to utilize her on the field.

"I'll play anywhere they need me -- middle infield, outfield, utility," she said. "I don't care, I just want to play."

Isabella is also coming off a big junior season, having batted .354 with five home runs and 32 RBIs. As a sophomore, she hit three homers, drove in 39 runs, and batted .453. She's also a member of the OCHS basketball team.

"I'm looking forward to playing at Indiana State, and to continue to play softball with my sister," said Isabella, a first baseman-outfielder who bats third in the Catholic order. "This is a great feeling. It feels like you've been rewarded for all the hard work you put in, but at the same time you know you have to keep working.

"I love the sport and I'm looking forward to my final season in high school. I hope we can improve, come together as a team and play to the best of our ability."

This past season, the left-handed-hitting Isabella was a First-Team All-State, First-Team All-County, and All-Area selection. She, too, competed in the Kentucky Juniors East-West All-Star Game.

"She's an impact player," Phelps said of Isabella. "She has a great work ethic and she can change a game with one swing of the bat.

"Although she's pretty quiet, she's still a great leader -- Isabella leads by example."

The twins' father, Glenn Henning, became emotional when speaking about the pair.

"They put in the extra time needed to be successful -- hitting off the tee in the garage, all the extra work it takes to achieve something like this," he said. "I'm just so proud of them both."

ISU, a member of the Missouri Valley Conference, is located in Terre Haute. This past season, the Sycamores went 19-35 overall and 5-21 in the MVC. Indiana State is coached by Mike Perniciaro.

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