Nov. 10, 2011
BERKELEY - As they have built quite a reputation in doing, the California softball coaching staff has signed four outstanding recruits to National Letters of Intent, head coach Diane Ninemire announced Wednesday. Vanessa Alvarez, Khala Taylor, Jasmin Mejia and Nisa Ontiveros will suit up in the Blue & Gold come the spring of 2013.
"I think it's a very strong recruiting class," Ninemire said. "We really look forward to them joining us. They'll all add a lot of speed and versatility to our line-up."
"I choose the University of California because of its renowned reputation for superior academics and having the opportunity to play on a Pac-12 softball team," Alvarez said. "Also, Cal is near home and I am honored to represent the Golden Bears."
A speedy trackster out of Temecula, Calif., Khala Taylor will no doubt be an asset on the base paths. At the plate, she's a triple threat who can bunt, slap and swing away.
"I chose Cal because it is an amazing, prestigious university that I immediately fell in love with on my unofficial visit as a sophomore," Taylor said. "I connected instantly with the coaching staff and players, and they made me feel like I was already a part of the Bear Family. Cal's softball team is one of the top programs in the nation with amazing coaches that make each and every player strong in both their strengths and weaknesses."
Jasmin Mejia will fill in the outfield with her great range and strong arm. She also wields a powerful bat.
"I love the family environment on and off the softball field," Mejia said. "Playing Pac-12 softball and having a degree from Cal are once in a lifetime opportunities."
Nisa Ontiveros is a powerful pitcher who is expected to make an immediate contribution in the circle with her great ball movement.
"Cal had everything that I wanted in a college," Ontiveros said. "It offers me an opportunity to receive an education from an amazing academic program and allows me to play with a top-notch softball team with a great group of players and coaches. When I went on campus, I fell in love with the atmosphere and beautiful surroundings."
Hometown: San Jose, Calif.
High school: Archbishop Mitty High School
Position: Pitcher, Outfield
Was the pitcher and player of the year as well as MVP of her prep team as a junior
Named sophomore of the year and first-team all league in 2010
Was second-team all-league and freshman of the year
Led the team to finish first in league play all three years and first in the CSS as a freshman and junior
The Mitty squad was ranked first in the nation her freshman year
Mentored students at junior high and elementary schools
Manager for the boy's varsity basketball team at Mitty - kept stats, ran drills, organized tournaments
A six-semester member of the academic honor roll
Named the Sequoia Yosemite League Rookie of the Year as a freshman
In 2010 was placed on the All-Sequoia Yosemite League first team and the Bakersfield Californian first-team all-area
Led her prep squad to the 2011 CIF Central Valley DIII Championship and a No. 1 ranking in the state
As a junior, named to the second team of the Max Preps All-American list, ESPN Rise' All-State and MaxPreps Sports All-State lists
Participated in multiple extracurricular activities including AVID, Great Oak Step Team and more
As a freshman was named to the All-Valley first team, set the 200-meter school record (25.02s), was the freshman of the year and 4x400m league champion
Two-time sprinter of the year
National Society of High School Scholar as a sophomore and a scholar-athlete as a junior