Cal Softball Inks Three Recruits the 2008-09 season

Nov. 14, 2007

Berkeley - Three California high school softball standouts -- Frani Echavarria, Elia Reid and Jamia Reid have signed National Letters-of-Intent to join the University of California softball program for the 2008-09 season, Golden Bear head coach Diane Ninemire announced Wednesday.

'I am very excited about this year's recruiting class,' said Ninemire. 'I believe that Elia, Frani and Jamia are the top outfielders in the 2008 class. This group of young players will add a lot of excitement with their speed and overall athletic ability. The best thing of all is that they will bring a winning attitude to this team. This will certainly be the most outstanding class of outfielders that the Golden Bears have ever signed. The best thing about these great players is that they all of won national championships and this is the type of player that we want to bring into our program.'

A product of Martin Luther King High School in Riverside, Echavarria earned multiple accolades as a junior for the Wolves. She was a second-team all-CIF performer and earned first-team nods for all-county and all-league as well. Echavarria was named as her school's Most Valuable Player after logging a .524 batting average and 29 runs in 2007. As a sophomore, Echavarria earned first-team all-league honors and set single-season school records for stolen bases. Under the direction of head coach Doug Myers, Echavarria was a member of the Orange County Batbusters club team that won back-to-back national championships in 2005 and 2006.

'Frani will bring great leadership and skill to the Cal softball program,' said Ninemire. 'She is a centerfielder that possesses a great presence. She, like the Reid twins, has great bat control and is a terrific base runner. She can make things happen when she is on base and has the ability score every time.'

'I chose California because I really fell in love with the campus and its traditions,' said Echavarria. 'I feel very lucky to be able to attend a great college and also have amazing coaches. Diane and her coaching staff have this amazing support system that ensures you nothing but success. Yes they offered me an opportunity to attend a Pac-10 school for four years, but they welcomed me into a family that will truly last a life time.'

Hailing from John F. Kennedy High School in La Palma, twin sisters Elia and Jamia Reed should make an immediate impact on the Cal program. Elia helped guide the Fighting Irish to an Empire League title and a 29-2 overall record after notching a .379 batting average with 25 RBI and 22 stolen bases. For her efforts, she earned first-team all-league honors, as well as second-team all-county and all-state accolades.

'I chose Cal because of the many opportunities it has to offer in academics and sports,' said Reid. 'I've always wanted to play Pac-10 softball and win a championship. Cal has great players and I see great things happening in the future for the program.'

Her sister, Jamia, enjoyed a productive junior campaign at the plate for the Fighting Irish. Her .459 batting average, 33 runs and 41 stolen bases earned her the Empire League Most Valuable Player award, as well as first-team all-league, all-county, all-CIF and all-state nods. She was selected to the LA Times All-Star softball team and she garnered an EA Sports second-team All-America nod as well.

The sisters were both members of the Firecrackers 18 Gold club team that captured the ASA National Championship and Canada's Cup Championship in 2007.

'I chose Cal because it has one of the best academic and softball programs on the West Coast,' said Reid. 'Cal will give me the opportunity to play with a team that will win a championship. I chose Cal because I wanted to play Pac-10 softball with and against the best players.'

'Jamia and Elia are both very talented switch hitters,' said Ninemire. They can slap or turn around and hit from the right side for home run power.'

Cal begins its 2008 campaign in February.

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