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Student Writer Spotlight: UCLA’s Matthew Royer

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In an effort to highlight the work of student journalists and grow the coverage of the sport, D1Softball will periodically be featuring stories they have written throughout the 2024 season.

The stories will be free to read and links to their publication and social media accounts will be provided so readers can continue to support their coverage as much as possible. Student journalists juggle their reporting and game coverage with their own academic demands.

Today’s featured writer is Matthew Royer (@TheMatthewRoyer) from the Daily Bruin (@dailybruin). Royer shares how transfer Jadelyn Allchin has immediately contributed to UCLA’s team.


By Matthew Royer

Jadelyn Allchin spent four years in Seattle as a crucial part of Washington’s outfield.

When the graduate student – a veteran of Pac-12 play – looked for fresh scenery for a final campaign, she turned to the team she’d only beaten twice in four years.

“UCLA, the winningest program for softball, gave me this opportunity,” Allchin said. “So I took it and ran.”

Now, just five weeks into the season with No. 16 UCLA softball (15-6, 3-0 Pac-12), Allchin has cemented herself as a mainstay of the Bruins’ lineup.

Just ask her coach.

“When she came here, she said she wasn’t enjoying the game as much,” coach Kelly Inouye-Perez said. “(Now) you could see it, you could see she’s playing with passion. She’s playing all out. She’s coming through in big moments. She’s fired up for her team.”

The former Husky has been clutch for her new team over the past four games. Against Utah and Rutgers, Allchin hit .300, tallying four hits in 12 at-bats. It was those four that made the most impact for the Bruins.

On Friday, behind a two-run home run, she provided the insurance runs needed to help seal UCLA’s first win of conference play. In the next game of the series, Allchin tied the game up at five in the seventh inning with an RBI single, allowing sophomore utility Megan Grant to play hero for the walk-off win.

The Bruins, having already secured the series, went on to sweep the series on Sunday. While Allchin went hitless in the final game against the Utes, she reached and scored twice – batting ahead of her former youth club teammate Maya Brady.

The Bruins’ redshirt senior shortstop provided the bulk of the run production Sunday, but in the midweek game against Rutgers, Allchin sent the Bruin faithful home with something to celebrate, just as Grant had done nights earlier.

Stepping up to the plate in a tied game with the bases loaded, the Fountain Valley local slapped a ball into the outfield for a walk-off single – extending her team’s winning streak to seven.

“I’ve learned that I’ve become someone that, like, I’m dependable, which is awesome to have that pressure and that people are able to trust me,” Allchin said.

Before entering the collegiate ranks – during high school – softball players take the opportunity to play travel ball across the country to compete and display their skills in front of NCAA coaches, including UCLA’s Inouye-Perez.

With the Orange County Batbusters, Allchin played alongside her current teammates – redshirt seniors catcher Sharlize Palacios, outfielder Janelle Meoño and Brady.

Inouye-Perez said this bond allowed Allchin to “blend” into the UCLA system, adding that their chemistry has transitioned into on-the-field leadership. Palacios said Allchin has always been a key piece to lineups, even in childhood.

“I’ve played with Jadelyn since we were super young, and we have always known that Jadelyn is a clutch player,” Palacios said. “She will come up in the biggest situations, and it will be super common.”

After Inouye-Perez moved Allchin to the leadoff position one week ago, the Westwood newcomer said she had the opportunity to set the tone for the Bruins’ lineup.

“I just want to compete and just be able to give my all to a program,” Allchin said.

The link to the original story can be found here. Jadelyn Allchin delivers clutch plays for UCLA softball, cementing status as core player

Rhiannon Potkey can be reached at [email protected]