Hart hosts signing day 

From left to right: Kate Penberthy, Tenley Sweet, Alexis Nguyen, Palmer Freeman, Laney Grider and Chris Downs. Photo Courtesy of Hart Athletics

Six Hart High School athletes joined in on National Signing Day to officially ink their collegiate careers. 

These were the participating athletes: 

Kate Penberthy officially commits to Cal Baptist 

One of California’s best power hitters is officially heading to Cal Baptist. Senior shortstop Kate Penberthy committed over a year ago to the Lancers and will have one more season in a Hart uniform before heading to Riverside. 

Penberthy comes from a huge basketball family but it’s clear the softball field is where she wants to be. 

As a junior, the shortstop hit 13 home runs and batted .554 and was honored as an All-CIF and a first-team All-Foothill League selection.  

She is also regarded as an excellent student and leader. 

Tenley Sweet commits to Notre Dame softball 

Another All-CIF and Foothill League first teamer will play college ball but a bit further from home. 

Tenley Sweet led the Indians in 2022 with a .557 batting average while also sending out 10 homers.  

“[Sweet] is one of the best all-around players in the whole area with a combination of speed and power with outstanding defensive skills,” said Hart athletic director Craig Williams. “Notre Dame is fortunate to have another Sweet on their roster.” 

The Fighting Irish will be getting more than they could ask for in Sweet as the senior also excels in the classroom, including five AP classes. 

Alexis Nguyen heads to UCSD 

Hart girls’ soccer star Alexis Nguyen will continue her playing career as a Triton down at UC San Diego. 

Nguyen is going into her third year as a starter with varsity. Last season she helped the team reach a Foothill League title and a CIF Division semifinals appearance. 

The Indian captain has also had a stellar club career at the LAFC Academy, where she’s been a leader in goals and assists. 

Nguyen has the chance to repeat as a Foothill League champ and get another shot at a CIF title before heading down to San Diego.  

Palmer Freeman heads up to UC Davis 

Hart golfer Palmer Freeman has been a force in the Foothill League for the Indians. The senior will continue his elite play at UC Davis. 

“Palmer is an outstanding student athlete who has excelled in the classroom and on the course all four years at Hart High,” said Williams. 

Freeman has been in the top four in each year of action in the Foothill League. The senior has qualified for the SoCal Amateur and won the Los Angeles Country Club Championship twice.  

Laney Grider joins Masters’ hoops 

Hart’s star two-guard is officially staying local and heading to The Master’s University. Laney Grider has been one of Hart’s best players over the past two years. 

Grider’s shooting, defense and passing abilities have earned her two All-Foothill League selections and an All-CIF selection last season. 

The captain is aiming at winning her first league title on top of returning to the CIF semis for another shot at a CIF championship. 

The Mustangs receive yet another local gem from the valley.  

Chris Downs commits to Cal Poly SLO 

Hart pitcher Chris Downs is officially heading to San Luis Obispo to become a Cal Poly Mustang. 

Downs was vital to the Indians’ rotation last year, posting a 4-2 record, 2.81 ERA with 27 strikeouts in as many innings.  

He had numerous highlights in his junior season but notably notched a strikeout with the bases loaded in the league title game with Valencia last season. The fan kept the game even just before Hart’s offense would walk off in the 10th inning. 

The 6-foot, 7-inch lefty will look to help Hart win its third straight Foothill League title in his senior year. 

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