It does not take an area scout to recognize that Jadelyn Allchin has talent.
Most of those who have seen Huntington Beach High’s senior center fielder play a softball game have come to that conclusion on their own, even if they met her years ago.
Allchin committed to play softball at the University of Washington in her freshman year through the travel-ball circuit. At the time, she played for the late Mark Campbell in the O.C. Batbusters organization.
The story of how she wound up making Campbell’s 14U roster is more remarkable. Allchin recalled going to a tryout that was to be four hours long. Halfway through the tryout, she was sent home. It was not because she did not make the cut, but because there was no doubt in Campbell’s mind that they wanted her on the team.
Allchin showed up to her new club team as a pitcher, but Campbell and his coaching staff had other ideas for what they saw was a five-tool player.
“Coach Mark was like, ‘We already have three pitchers. Your arm is way better in the outfield, so we’re just going to put you there and see how you do,’” Allchin said. “I eventually ended up growing into an outfielder on that team, and that’s where I am today.”
It would not be long before Allchin worked her way up to the O.C. Batbusters 18U roster headed by Mike Stith. Last summer, she started for a team that reached the final of the 18U Premier bracket of the Premier Girls Fastpitch Nationals.
The O.C. Batbusters Stith lost to the Georgia Impact Lewis 6-4 in the championship game at Irvine’s Deanna Manning Stadium, but not before an improbable run that saw them win 10 consecutive elimination games after dropping their opening game to the Chicago-based defending champion Beverly Bandits Conroy.
“We were really excited before the six-games-in-a-row day because we knew that we had everything in us to win all those games,” Allchin said of the road to the PGF national title game. “The last games, [against the] Corona Angels, biggest rival for us for years, we’d have to double dip them in order to get to the next day. We did that, and we were all just really excited. We knew that we could do it.”
Prior to her senior season of high school softball, Allchin was named to the USA Softball 19U junior women’s national team.
Local softball fans had grown accustomed to watching Allchin’s combination of speed and power atop the Huntington Beach lineup, too. It took a while for Allchin to get going in her senior year due to a fractured hand, and later, a fractured orbital bone that she suffered on a comebacker while pitching during a team practice.
Huntington Beach advanced to its first semifinal in program history with a 3-1 win at Chino Hills in the quarterfinals. In that game, Allchin had three hits, three stolen bases, two runs scored and a run batted in.
The Oilers were eliminated by top-seeded Norco for the second year in a row, losing 9-2 at home in the semifinals. All things considered, Allchin was happy that her team got an opportunity to showcase its abilities in the playoffs, especially when it was anything but a guarantee that the Oilers would get in.
Huntington Beach (18-9, 4-5 in the Surf League) finished tied with Edison for third place in league. The Oilers received an at-large berth into the Division 1 playoffs, while the Chargers were left out of the Division 2 bracket.
“Everyone has something to lose,” Allchin said. “We thought, ‘We’re going to get the most out of the CIF rounds right now.’ We pushed through and worked really hard to get farther than any Huntington softball team has gone.”
Oilers coach Jeff Forsberg said that of all the things that Allchin brought to the table, the most irreplaceable facet of Allchin’s game was her consistency as a leadoff hitter. He said there was a direct connection between her success and that of the team’s.
“She’s always looking for perfection because she’s as close to being perfect as she can come,” Forsberg said. “There are only two levels for her — perfection and out.”
Forsberg added that he believes the four-time first-team all-league selection would have been one of the best players on the field regardless of what sport she had chosen.
“She competes,” Forsberg said. “She doesn’t want to get beat, so it doesn’t matter if it is a low-end league game or a high-end championship game.
“She’s very athletic. She’s the most athletic kid I have ever coached. I’ve told many people personally, ‘She could play any sport at Huntington and do good at it.’”
Born: Nov. 27, 2001
Hometown: Fountain Valley
Height: 5 feet 6
Weight: 125 pounds
Coach: Jeff Forsberg
Favorite food: Lasagna
Favorite movie: “10 Things I Hate About You”
Favorite athletic moment: Allchin hit for the cycle in a Sunset League game against Fountain Valley during her junior year. The Washington commit went four for four with three runs scored and two RBIs in the game. The host Oilers won by a score of 8-1.
Week in review: The senior center fielder went three for four with three stolen bases in a 3-1 win for Huntington Beach at Chino Hills in the CIF Southern Section Division 1 quarterfinals on May 9. Allchin also homered in the Oilers’ 9-5 win over visiting Esperanza in the second round on May 7.
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