The King Philip girls’ softball team will send two more players to NCAA Division 1 teams next year. On the first day where high school athletes can sign their letter of intent to play for a college, second baseman Tori Constantin signed her letter to play for Central Connecticut State University and pitcher/first baseman Anna O’Neill will head to Macon, Georgia next fall to attend Mercer University.
Both signed their letters in a special ceremony at Extra Innings in Wrentham surrounded by friends and family.
After being recruited by the Bears, a trip down to Mercer last summer made O’Neill consider the school located in Central Georgia.
During the trip, O’Neill was not only impressed with the campus, but with softball coach James DeFeo and his reputation at the school.
“He (DeFeo) knows what he’s doing and he’s very highly spoken of at the school,” O’Neill said. “The campus is gorgeous and there’s a ton of different options of what I can do for school.”
In addition to the campus and the coach, O’Neill was surprised at the friendliness around town while on a walk around town, a drastic change to what one growing up near Boston may be use to.
“I remember walking down the street by myself and I passed about 10 people and not one of them didn’t say hi,” O’Neill said. “It’s a really friendly atmosphere and everyone is so nice there.”
Despite spening more time last year at first base rather than in the pitching circle because of standout and current George Washington Colonial Meg Rico doing most of the throwing for the Warriors, O'Neill was able to earn an ERA of .87 and a WHIP of .37 during the last season. She is expected to see a considerable increase in time on the mound this upcoming season.
As O’Neill will travel down south, Constantin will only be a two-hour car ride away from home when she starts classes at Central Connecticut next fall.
Meeting with Blue Devils head coach Jeff Franquet as a freshman, Constantin quickly made the school one of her top choices based on his softball philosophy, her love of the campus, and the opportunity to peruse a degree in Biomolecular Science.
“It’s such a pretty campus. After touring, I loved it,” Constantin said.
To help with the transition, two other future Blue Devils already play with Constantin on her travel team, the Rhode Island Thunder. One other is a member of another team called the New Jersey Pride whom she had the chance to recently meet.
“I think it will make it a little easier going it,” Constantin said
One of the best second basemen in the Hockomock League, Constantin led the league last season with a .630 batting average during the regular season and picked up Hockomock League All-Star honors. Constantin was also a member of the ESPN Boston second team.