Nov. 19, 2009
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The softball coaching staff and the athletics administration at Florida State is proud to announce the signing of six student-athletes to National Letters of Intent Wednesday, Nov. 11.
Celeste Gomez, Ashlyn Masters, Maddie O’Brien, Kelly Hensley, Evelyn Morgado and Courtney Senas will all join the FSU softball team in time for the 2010-11 season.
“Our entire coaching staff and program are proud to welcome an amazing group of girls,” FSU softball coach Lonni Alameda said. “We have been very fortunate to develop great relationships with these athletes over the past year. We are not only bettering our program with skilled softball players but also bettering the community with quality individuals.
“Our coaching staff has spent numerous hours communicating with not only these student-athletes but their families and we are thrilled they have decided to become Seminoles.”
A right-handed catcher, Gomez excelled at Columbia High School in Lake City, Fla. on both the softball and weightlifting teams. As a softball player, she earned First Team All-Area Honors her sophomore year. As a weightlifter, Gomez was named state champion in her weight class last year and also set the new clean-jerk state record as a junior.
Gomez, who is a member of the National Honor Society, was named Weightlifter of the Year by the Gainesville Sun after last season.
“Celeste is a talented catcher who boasts strong skills and a tremendous work ethic,” Alameda said. “Her accolades in softball speak highly of her abilities but her weight-lifting mentality and commitment also show her strength as a disciplined student-athlete.”
Masters, a right-handed second baseman, earned First Team All County, First Team All region and First Team All State honors as a junior last season at Greenbrier High School in Evans, Ga.
Masters’ accolades as a junior were nothing new as the 5-foot-6 student-athlete earned First Team All State honors once before as a sophomore. She was also offensive MVP, Region Player of the Year and All County Player of the Year as a sophomore. In each of the last two seasons, Masters has led her high school team in homeruns.
“Ashlyn is a spunky, energetic player who is going to bring a wealth of knowledge and passion to the softball,” Alameda said. “She has been a leader already among her signing class and we are extremely excited to see her grow in a Seminole jersey over the next four years.”
O’Brien is a left-handed batter and right-handed thrower from the shortstop position. A native of Palm Harbor, Fla. where she has starred on the softball team at Palm Harbor University High School, O’Brien has been an All Conference, All County and All Suncoast selection the first three years of her career.
In a 2008 edition of Rise Magazine – a publication of ESPN – O’Brien was featured in the “Who’s Got Next” section.
“Maddie is a very skilled and fundamentally sound player,” Alameda said. “She is also a class act and brings character that we will rely on in coming years. She is going to play many positions and give us the versatility we need from this class of athletes.”
Hensley is a three-time First Team All Area selection at Niceville High School in Niceville, Fla. As a junior last season, the 5-foot-8 outfielder/first baseman was named Softball Player of the Year by Northwest Florida Daily News and also earned First Team All State recognition as her team’s MVP.
“Kelly is one of the most driven student-athletes in this rookie class,” Alameda said. “Kelly has the tools and skills to become a solid player in many positions here at FSU. We look forward adding her determination, commitment and excellence to this program.”
Morgado will come to FSU after what has been a fantastic career at Florida Christian School in Miami, Fla. The talented, defensive-minded shortstop earned First Team All State honors last season and was named the state of Florida’s defensive MVP.
In addition to being named First Team All County every year she has played softball, Morgado has also excelled as a basketball and volleyball player at Florida Christian School.
“Evy comes to the garnet and gold with a passion to play this game at the highest level,” Alameda said. “She brings much needed depth with her athleticism and versatility and will be called upon to play numerous positions.”
Senas is a talented shortstop/outfield prospect all the way from Wahiawa, Hawaii. The 5-foot-6 athlete batted .540 over the past two seasons and belted a total of seven home runs, five triples and 18 doubles over the course of her sophomore and junior seasons at Mililani High School.
“We are extremely excited about the addition of our first Hawaiian player,” Alameda said. “Courtney is one of the best all-around athletes and is going to compete at numerous positions on the field. Courtney has a strong sense of family values and we are happy to welcome her into our Seminole family.”