As always, National Signing Day 2019 was an eventful one for Plant City and Strawberry Crest high schools.
Eleven total athletes — seven from Crest, four from Plant City — put their pens to paper Wednesday in morning and afternoon ceremonies on the schools’ grounds.
Plant City High School went first at 9 a.m. in the auditorium. Classmates, coaches, teachers and parents watched as Reagan Tears, Reagan Brown, Ashton Mincey and Amber Trejo made their college commitments final and heard kind parting words from their coaches. Tears and Brown are the first PCHS cheerleaders to sign athletic scholarship offers, with both headed to Warner University in the fall. Mincey is headed to Southeastern University on a football scholarship and Trejo is bound for Georgia Gwinnett College, where she will play soccer.
Strawberry Crest held its signing ceremony in the cafeteria at 2:30 p.m. with a similarly packed house. The baseball and softball teams each had three players sign letters and wrestler Connor DePianta finalized his choice to wrestle at the Citadel, making him the first Crest wrestler to get a Division 1 scholarship. From the baseball team, Kade Manderscheid (Polk State College), Alex Marshall (South Florida State College) and Ryan Dell (University of West Alabama) signed NLIs. The softball team had Taylor Jones (Pasco-Hernando State College), Kacey Fultz (Southeastern University) and Brianna Moffitt (Polk State College) sign their letters.
Durant does not have National Signing Day events, as the school prefers to let athletes have their own individual signing parties throughout the school year. Four Cougars have signed NLIs in 2019: Demarcus Governor (Central Michigan University football), Andrea Rebello (Southeastern University softball), Samantha Hampton (State College of Florida softball) and Maggie Pate (Furman University tennis).
Southeastern University leads the pack with three signed athletes from the area. Polk State College and Warner University each had two athletes sign.
2019 signings as of Feb. 6:
Demarcus Governor – Central Michigan University – Football
Andrea Rebello – Southeastern University – Softball
Samantha Hampton – State College of Florida – Softball
Maggie Pate – Furman University – Tennis
Reagan Tears — Warner University — Cheerleading
Reagan Brown — Warner University — Cheerleading
James “D.J.” Gordon IV — University of Minnesota — Football
Tyreke Harrison — Georgia State University — Football
Ashton Mincey — Southeastern University — Football
Amber Trejo — Georgia Gwinnett College — Soccer
Kade Manderscheid — Polk State College — Baseball
Alex Marshall — South Florida State College — Baseball
Ryan Dell — University of West Alabama — Baseball
Taylor Jones — Pasco-Hernando State College — Softball
Kacey Fultz — Southeastern University — Softball
Brianna Moffitt — Polk State College — Softball
Connor DePianta — The Citadel — Wrestling