PHILADELPHIA, Pa. - The University of Pennsylvania head softball coach, Leslie King, has announced the early decision acceptances for the Class of 2010. Next year’s incoming freshman class will include four student-athletes: Nicole Aaronson (Tesoro/ Mission Viejo, Calif.), Cristina Mullins (The Westminster School/Atlanta, Ga.), Ashleigh Smalley (Marcus/Highland Village, Texas) and Keiko Uraguchi (Palos Verdes Peninsula/Rolling Hills Estates, Calif.).
“I am very excited about the student-athletes that have been accepted early decision to Penn,” said coach King.“This group will definitely impact both our team and the league.All four have also shown themselves to be outstanding athletes as well as scholars and citizens.This is a very exciting group that will be a big factor in our team’s success over the next four years. All of us at Penn Softball look forward to welcoming this group of student-athletes as part of the Class of 2010!”
Aaronson, a pitcher, is the reigning Pacific Coast League MVP as well as a first-team selection from 2003-2005. In 2004, she was picked All-CIF Southern Section. She plays for the Irvine Sting Gold in the summer, the same team that current Quakers Melissa Haffner and Teresa Leyden played for. In addition to her accomplishments on the field, Aaronson is a member of the National Honor Society.
Smalley, King’s first recruit from Texas, was a second-team All-District Selection and a District Eight-5A All-District Academic Team honoree. As a sophomore, Smalley was named first-team All-Denton County and Second-Team All-District. Along with Aaronson, she will provide depth to the pitching staff in 2007.
“We have added two excellent pitchers in Nicole and Ashleigh. They are not only accomplished pitchers, but they also hit the ball well and hit it hard.”
Mullins will be looked upon to provide speed in the outfield in 2007. In 2003, she was named Atlanta Journal & Constitution Player of the Year. Mullins was a two-time All-State Selection and has garnered team MVP honors in 2003 and 2004. She plays for the GA XTreme in the summer.
Rounding out the Class of 2010 is Uraguchi, who will also provide depth and speed to the outfield. In 2005, she was named Los Angeles Times First-Team All-Region and Daily Breeze First-Team All-Area. Uraguchi played last summer for the Gordon Panthers Gold travel team. Academically, she is a member of the National Honor Roll.
“We add tremendous speed and athleticism in outfielders Uraguchi and Mullins. Both have played a very high level of summer ball and high school ball and have had impressive success during that time,” said King.
The 2006 Quakers get their season underway on Sunday, March 5 at the Chapman Tournament in Orange, Calif.