Early signing period
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Early signing period gets off to fast start
By Steve Dorsey
Palm Beach Post Staff Writer
Thursday, November 10, 2005
Several area athletes took advantage of the one-week early signing period that began Wednesday by signing national letters of intent.
Among those who signed Wednesday was St. Andrew's basketball standout Xavier Perkins, who made good on his commitment to Florida Atlantic University and signed with the Owls.
Perkins, considered one of the area's top-rated players entering his senior year at the Boca Raton school, is a 6-foot-4 shooting guard who averaged 19.8 points a game last season for the Scots.
Florida Atlantic's baseball program also will pick up five area standouts. Wellington outfielder Ryan Cheatham, Jupiter Christian outfielder/infielder Matt Greener and Park Vista teammates, outfielder Larry Walicki and catcher Justin Dalles, signed baseball scholarships with FAU. Palm Beach Central pitcher/infielder Brad Peacock is expected to sign with the Owls today.
Suncoast senior Lecia Brown signed a volleyball scholarship with Louisville, where she said she plans to major in chemistry and then study medicine. Brown also is one of the state's top sprinters and said she plans to also run track for the Cardinals.
Shortstop Megan Voeller of Jensen Beach will become the first athlete in the two-year-old school's history to receive a Division I scholarship when she signs a softball letter of intent today with Stetson.
Andre Johnson, who was The Post co-Wrestler of the Year last season, signed with Fresno State. Johnson wrestled at Atlantic last season but has transferred to Jupiter Christian for his senior year.
John Carroll pitcher Colton Willems, an All-Area first-team selection last season for the Rams, signed a baseball scholarship with the University of Florida.
Cardinal Newman golfer Jude Eustaquio, The Post's defending boys Player of the Year, also signed a national letters of intent with Florida.
King's Academy senior Danielle Bradley will sign a track and field scholarship today with Baylor. Also, Atlantic distance runner Jackie Areson is expected to sign a cross-country and track scholarship with Tennessee.
Early signing period
Four Players Sign NLI's to Play Baseball at FAU
Nov. 10, 2005
Team adds eight in early signing period
Florida Atlantic University's baseball program signed four additional players on Thursday bringing the total number of players to sign during the early signing period to eight. Mike Barbara, Ryan Ouellette and Billy Degnan, are three junior college transfers that will add experience to the squad while Larry Walicki is a high school senior from Park Vista.
At St. Petersburg Community College, Barbara posted an 8-1 record with eight saves and a 1.91 ERA last year when the team finished second at the 2005 JUCO World Series. The 6'3" right-handed pitcher earned Second Team All-Conference recognition and was drafted in the 41st round by the Toronto Blue Jays.
"Mike can do it all on the mound," said recruiting coordinator John McCormack "He can start, relieve and close. He has three pitches he throws for strikes and he will continue to improve. We look for Mike to be a vital part of our staff next year."
A native of Palm City, FL, Ryan Ouellette will make the trek down Interstate 95 where fellow Martin County High School player Mike Crotta already resides. Ouellette spent his freshman season at Virginia before transferring to Indian River Community College as a sophomore.
"Ryan is one of the hardest working players that I have seen," said McCormack. "He has tremendous stuff and he is still learning how good he can be. I know he will be a force on next year's staff."
Billy Degnan is a local product from Delray Beach, FL and went to Atlantic High School before making his way to Tallahassee Community College. McCormack believes that the outfielder/infielder will provide big offense for the squad. "Billy is a physically gifted athlete that consistently hits the ball hard. We feel Billy will prove to be a power bat in the middle of our lineup."
The second Park Vista Community High School player to sign this season, Larry Walicki will remain teammates with Justin Dalles next season. Walicki is a First-Team All-Conference and Second-Team All-County recipient. A 6'1", 165 pound left-handed pitcher/outfielder, McCormack believe he could either pitch or play the field in college. "Larry can really pitch, with his curveball being his dominant pitch. He can also swing the bat. It will be interesting to see how he progresses in college. I know he will be successful due to his work ethic."
The Owls' season will get underway in February when the team hosts Tennessee.