INA -- What a difference a couple of weeks can make.

In the final week of Rend Lake College's softball season, former Mount Carmel softball standout Carmen Deisher was set on attending Vincennes University in the fall, opting to further her academic career and pursue her degree as she hadn't been receiving interest to continue her athletic career.

That all changed when a coach from Oakland City University came to one of Deisher's games and loved what she saw from the Lady Warrior second baseman. Oakland City's coaches communicated to Deisher their desire for her to become a member of the Mighty Oaks softball team. The interest was mutual and Deisher quickly accepted the offer as the talks continued, shifting her plans beyond Rend Lake accordingly.

"I didn't know where I was going to go at first because at the end of the week of my last season playing here, I wasn't going to play anywhere," Deisher said. "I had planned to go to Vincennes and then Oakland City came to one of my games and she said she really wanted me. That full week I decided I wanted to go there."

Deisher made her decision final on Wednesday afternoon in a Signing Ceremony at Rend Lake College in the Student Center at which she signed her National Letter of Intent to attend Oakland City.

Joining her and the ceremony were family, friends, teammates and Rend Lake head softball coach Dave Ellingsworth in her final day on campus at Rend Lake.

As she inked her signature on the papers, Deisher officially became a student-athlete at NCAA Division II member school Oakland City University and will be challenged accordingly with the competition level, coupled with a closer distance to the friendly confines of home (the commute to Oakland City's just under a 40 minute drive from Mount Carmel). Based on her level of success at the JUCO level though, Deisher should fare just fine.

She enjoyed a terrific career as the leadoff hitter for the Lady Warriors, posting a .426 batting average and a team-high 48 runs in her freshman season at Rend Lake. Her batting average slipped a bit in her sophomore season (.358), but she did improve on several aspects of her game. Deisher drew 10 more walks in her sophomore campaign with her OBP spiking up as a result of her patience at the plate, as well as increasing her stolen base total up to a team-high 19 in the 2019 season.

Against her hometown Wabash Valley College Lady Warriors, Deisher played perhaps some of her best softball of her career. In seven games against Wabash Valley this year the Mount Carmel native posted a .480 batting average with six runs scored, two RBIs and a pair of stolen bases. Deisher helped Rend Lake achieve their first win over Wabash Valley since April 2, 2017 in an 8-3 Region 24 opener series victory against WVC on May 6.

"That was definitely one of my favorite memories," I always wanted to beat them and I know we've gotten close these past couple years. Finally beating them in Mount Carmel was awesome."

In her time at Rend Lake Deisher says she's most improved at being a leader, citing her relationship with teammates she's developed and the tight knit family atmosphere in Ina.

As one chapter ends another begins and she was all smiles when talking about what the future has in store for her.

"I'm excited." Deisher spoke of her next journey.

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