Heights’ Neiling Signs to Play Softball for Franklin College

(Photo courtesy of Jen Kauffman
Hamilton Heights’ senior Belle Neiling has signed a letter of intent to play softball for the Franklin College Grizzlies in Franklin, Indiana this fall. Neiling is pictured with her family (l-r); parents Amie and Tony Neiling and brothers Theo and Eli.

Belle Neiling, Hamilton Heights’ senior, has signed a letter of intent to play softball for Franklin College in Franklin, Indiana this fall. Franklin College is a member of the Heartland Conference and a NCAA Division III athletic institution. She is the daughter of Amie and Tony Neiling.

“I fell in love with Franklin College during my first visit,” recalls Belle Neiling, of one of Indiana’s oldest liberal arts institutions. “Meeting with Softball Head Coach, Angie Bain, sealed the deal.” Neiling said she plans to be active at Franklin College and in the community while earning a double major in psychology and sociology and minor in criminal justice to ultimately earn her doctorate in criminal psychology.

Neiling has been playing softball since the age of three and travel ball beginning at age eight. It was shortly after she started travel ball that she set her sights on playing at college. From there she would play year-round, attend camps, work with personal trainers, and build her skill in preparation for this opportunity.

Neiling started her softball career off at Hamilton Heights strong. She has been a varsity center-field starter all four years and has also been a five-season member of Hamilton Heights Cheerleading squad. She received an All-County Honorable Mention, named Offensive Rookie of the Year, a member of the All-Conference Team, Team Captain, and is among the Top 100 Softball Players in Indiana, Class of 2022.

In addition, she has been among Hamilton Heights’ Top 10% since her freshman year, is a member of the National Honor Society and this year’s secretary, Spanish and Bring Change to Mind clubs, a volunteer cheer coach, and works at Pizza House.

Neiling credits her parents as being the most influential in her development as a strong student athlete. She also credits her high school coaches, Ken Olovich, Dylan Baber, and Shelby Willis as being instrumental readying her to play softball at the collegiate level. “Belle has been a mainstay in the softball program since entering high school,” said Kurt Ogden, Hamilton Heights High School Athletic Director. “She has been a tremendous leader on and off the field and an excellent role model for her teammates. We will miss her hustle, speed and determination but it’s assuring to know she’ll be an outstanding representative of Hamilton Heights and continue those same qualities while attending Franklin College.”