Click to read about the best places to eat on campus, freshman packing tips, and how to keep in touch with friends.

Softball signs five local players to letters of intent

USF softball coach Ken Eriksen announced Wednesday the signing of five Letters of Intent during the early signing period. Alison Savarese, Brittany Villa, Melissa Rosas, Catherine Olnick and Mandi Brown will officially join the softball program starting in the 2006-07 academic year.

“I think we got a class that is pretty darn good,” Eriksen said. “We’re not rebuilding; we’re not reloading; we’re kind of in a good state right now.”

Savarese, a third baseman from Seminole High School, was named First Team All-County her sophomore and junior year and was awarded the St. Petersburg Times All-Suncoast Team honors the last two years.

Villa, from Academy of Holy Names, will add depth to the infield with her ability to play second base, third base or shortstop. She earned the All-County Player of the Year Distinction award in Class 3A level in 2005.

Rosas, from King High School, comes to the Bulls to provide extra hitting, while Olnick, a catcher from Heritage High School, led her team to a state championship in 2005.

Rounding out the signees is Brown, a utility player with base running expertise who hails from Buchholz High School and earned All-State Player honors in 2003 and 2005.

“We got a lot of All-State players and a lot of all-county players,” Eriksen said. “Not just all-state one year; they’ve been all-state players since they were freshmen and sophomores in high school, so you’ve got some great experience and very high level of talent.”