Tri-City area athletes sign with college programs
Despite the COVID-19 pandemic that cut short many of their seasons, multiple Tri-City area athletes have secured colleges to continue their athletic and education endeavors next year.
Below is a look at some of the area athletes The Daily Review was able to speak with recently:
Central Catholic High School senior Emily Price has signed to continue her bowling career at Alabama State University in Montgomery, Alabama.
Price, a first-team all-district selection as a senior as well as an academic all-state composite selection, finished her senior season with a 172 bowling average.
She said she chose Alabama State because of the academic aspect. She will be majoring in forensic science, and the Alabama State Crime Lab is on campus where she possibly could intern her senior season.
“I’m excited. I can’t wait, but I’m also nervous,” Price said of continuing her career at the next level.
Her father and high school coach, Jason Price, said collegiate bowling has some differences with substitutions that can be made in-game.
“So she’ll be able to hone in on her strengths, and the coach will use her as needed,” he said.
Scottie Metrejean’s sophomore season at Southwest Mississippi Community College was cut short due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, much of the former Morgan City High school standout’s recruitment to her next destination, Xavier University of Louisiana, happened during COVID-19.
Xavier University is introducing softball, beginning next season, and its new coach, Leslie Ballard, began work in March.
“She called me and offered me during COVID,” Metrejean said. “I was going to keep my recruitment open basically until the end of season, because my stats were going to be up. I had offers. I had people looking at me, but just with all this COVID, it was kind of easier for me to go to Xavier because I didn’t want to take the chance of their old players coming back and either sitting the bench or somebody decommitting with me because they have another player coming back.”
Due to the COVID pandemic, waivers have been given to allow athletes who normally would have exhausted their eligibility this past season the option to return next year.
In 13 games as a sophomore, Metrejean batted .345 with an on-base percentage of .424 and a slugging percentage of .414. She collected 10 hits, including two doubles, and had three RBIs and one stolen base. She also scored five runs.
Defensively, she led the team with 64 putouts and had a .931 fielding percentage.
The Tri-City area will have a second softball signee at Xavier in New Orleans as Layla Giroir inked with the school Wednesday.
She said she got in contact with them through an app where Xavier was able to watch her highlight videos and view her academic information as well.
Giroir, a second-team All-District 8-3A selection as a junior, said she had been talking with Xavier for about two months, and the school extended a scholarship to her.
“It’s amazing,” she said of being able to continue her softball career. “I’ve been dreaming of it forever now, and to finally be able to is super relieving and exciting that I’m going to be able to keep doing what I love.”
During her senior season, she batted .379 with one home run, one triple, three doubles, 12 runs scored and six stolen bases.
She missed a week of an already-shortened season due to an injury.
“She put some good things on tape and got interest from a lot of colleges from all over the country,” Patterson Coach Robert Marin said. “She had a great high school career and was clutch in some big games for us, but she also had tough times that tested her. She worked through disappointment and came out on the other side stronger. She never gave up. She has speed, and became a bigger threat every season, and she hasn’t peaked yet.”
Patterson High standout pitcher Reid Perkins already had Loyola University in New Orleans as an option heading into his senior baseball season.
The success he had during the season just made the Wolfpack’s offer more enticing.
Perkins finished his season with a 1-1 record. In 25 innings, he had a 1.8 ERA and surrendered five earned runs while fanning 40.
He said he received other interest and schools wanted him to walk on, but he said Loyola was one of his best offers.
“The coaches that are coming in for Loyola, they were some good coaches from other schools, so my dad talked me into it and said this was probably my best opportunity to go play baseball somewhere,” he said.
Perkins, a first-team All-District 8-3A selection as a junior, said he liked the environment and hospitality that Loyola offers.
“I think he’s going to compete at the next level,” Patterson baseball coach Brett Dore said. “I feel like once he gets to Loyola, they’re going to take care of him, and I’m pretty sure he’s going to become one of their (key) guys, if not this year.”
Morgan City High standout pitcher Chris Pitre wanted to continue his baseball career at the collegiate level, but he didn’t know after his senior season was cut short if that was going to be a possibility.
That’s when he was contacted by New Orleans-area school Nunez Community College and was offered a scholarship.
“It’s great,” Pitre said of continuing his baseball career. “Whenever the Nunez coach called me, I sort of like just sat there shocked.”
It was the realization that he would be able to continue playing.
In his senior season, he finished 3-1 on the mound with a 3.50 ERA. In 22.2 innings, he walked 11 and struck out 25.
A “high-end competitor who loves to compete” as well as an “unbelievable person” was how his high school coach, Trent Higginbothem, described Pitre, who was an honorable mention All-District 7-4A selection as a junior.
“I think he is going to really excel once he gets to Nunez, and I think his ceiling is going to be as high as he wants to take it,” said Higginbothem, a former third baseman at the University of North Florida. “This will be the first time he’s fully-committed to baseball year-round, and I think that is going to greatly benefit him.”