April 21, 2014
DeKALB, Ill. - The Northern Illinois baseball team added a 10th player to its 2014 signing class Monday, announcing the addition of Hinsdale South High School infielder Don Buonavolanto. Don is following in the footsteps of older brother, Joe, who played at NIU from 2007-10.
“We’re really excited to have Don choose Northern Illinois University. He’s a really good player with a lot upside,” said Head Coach Ed Mathey. “He’s got a lot of foot speed, he’s got some bat speed and all of our coaches have seen him. Coach Todd Coryell and Tom Carcione did a great job identifying him and he’s familiar name to the program. He’s been around NIU for awhile since his older brother Joe played here. Don will come in and create competition for the players around him and that’s always a good thing to have on the baseball field, and he’s a kid that likes to compete.”
Buonavolanto has played shortstop for the Hornets the last three seasons, including 2014, helping the squad to the West Suburban Conference Gold Division Championship as a sophomore in 2012.
After the 2013 season, in which he hit .360 with 10 doubles, six triples and four home runs, Buonavolanto was named the team’s MVP and top-hitter, en route to All-West Suburban Conference and All-Area honors. Buonavolanto was flawless on the base path as well, stealing 30 bases in 30 attempts.
The freshman to be is one of 10 signees in the NIU Huskies Class of 2014, comprised of nine freshman and one junior. Buonavolanto is 1-of-5 players from Illinois and 1-of-3 infielders in the signing class this year.
The Huskies will return to the field Wednesday, April 23 for a contest with UW-Milwaukee at Ralph McKinzie Field. First pitch is set for 3:05 p.m.
A complete breakdown of the signing class with more info on Buonavolanto is listed below. Follow the Huskies on Facebook by liking “NIU Huskies” and on Twitter @NIUathletics and @NIU_Baseball.
5-10 | 175
Willowbrook, Ill. (Hinsdale South)
HINSDALE SOUTH HIGH SCHOOL:
Earned two varsity letters for the Hornets baseball team … Helped team to 16-2 conference record as a sophomore and as a junior … Hit .333 in his sophomore season, following up with a .360 average as a junior … Also accumulated 10 doubles, six triples and four home runs as a junior … Was a perfect 30-for-30 stealing bases in 2013 … Drew 29 walks in his junior season.
Born September 15, 1995 … Son of Deborah and Joseph Buonavolanto … Four-year Dean’s List honoree … Volunteered for several events through Hinsdale South, feeding homeless in the area … Brother, Joe, played baseball at NIU (2007-10) … Joe holds the Huskies single-game record for hits in a game, five (May 9, 2010 at Eastern Michigan) … Played with the Top Tier U17 Travel Team in summer of 2013.
Don Buonavolanto | IF | 5-10 | 175 | Willowbrook, Ill. (Hinsdale South)
Joe Boyle | IF | 6-0 | 185 | Wheaton, Ill. (Benet Academy)
Colby Carmichael | LHP/UTL | 6-1 | 185 | Des Moines, Iowa (Des Moines East)
Matthew Hoffman | C/UTL | 6-3 | 205 | East Dubuque, Ill. (Walhert Catholic)
Kevin Jones | RHP | 5-11 | 180 | Chesterton, Ind. (Portage)
Joe Jumonville | C/OF | 5-11 | 180 | Munster, Ind. (Munster)
Stephen Letz | OF | 6-1 | 200 | Dyer, Ind. (Lake Central/South Suburban College)
Donovin Sims | RHP | 6-2 | 185 | Rockford, Ill. (Hononegan Community)
Brad Wood | IF/RHP | 5-8 | 165 | Orland Park, Ill. (St. Laurence)
Malique Ziegler | OF | 6-1 | 165 | Des Moines, Iowa (Des Moines East)
Illinois – 5
Indiana – 3
Iowa – 2
Freshman – 9
Junior – 1
Catcher – 2
Infield – 3
Outfield – 2
Pitcher – 3