DAHLONEGA, GA - North Georgia College & State University head softball coach Mike Davenport has announced the signing of six players to NCAA National Letters of Intent. The six players, all from the state of Georgia include, Katie Block (Parkview HS), Tiffanie Burns (Screven Co. HS), Melissa Dickie (Buford HS), Taylor Merritt (Walnut Grove HS), Kaitlyn Seabolt (Union Co. HS), and Rochelle Shuman (Screven Co. HS).
Block prepped at Parkview HS under Coach Joey Farah where she was a four-year Varsity letter winner. She was a member of the 2008 All-Gwinnett County Team Honorable Mention and 2009 All-Gwinnett County Team First Team. In 2009, she received the PHS Best Offensive Player award. The Panthers' catcher/shortstop finished last season with a .410 batting average. Block was also a member of the PHS Honor Roll, a Special Education mentor, and a Special Olympics volunteer.
Burns, a 2010 All-Region Shortstop, has lettered as a varsity member of the SCHS softball team from 2007-10 under Coach Billy Pollock. In 2009, she was named GHSA AA All-State Team while hitting .437 with a school record 38 runs batted in. Burns has also been named the SCHS 2009 Team Most Valuable Players while being Co-Player of the year in Region 3-AA. The high school National Honor Society Member plays her travel ball with the Georgia Thunder and Coach Jeff Rainwater
Melissa prepped at Buford HS under Coach Tony Wolfe, where she was a member of the GHSA AA State Championship Team in 2007, 2008, 2009, and 2010. As a pitcher, Dickie was named to the GHSA All-State Team from 2007-2010 as well as being named to the All-Gwinnett County Teams from 2007-2010. In the summer of 2010, Dickie was a member of the 18-Gold ASA National Championship Team – East Cobb Bullets, coached by Keith Pauly.
Merritt is a Monroe, Ga., native who prepped at Walnut Grove HS while playing for Coach Taylor Brooks. In 2010, Merritt was the first student-athlete in Walnut Grove HS history to sign an athletic scholarship. During her senior season, Merritt hit .363 while driving in 22 runs and scoring 29 Runs. She earned the WGHS Captain Award in 2010 along with being named All-Region First-Team. She was also named WGHS Best Defense Award during her high school career and won the award of Student Athlete of the Year in 2008. Taylor has also served as Student Council Treasure and has also been a mentor for "Learning for Tots".
The Union County High School senior helped lead her team to a 2010 GHSA AA State Runner-Up finish under Head Coach Jessica Stewart. Seabolt was named GHSA Player of the Year in 2010 while setting UCHS records for home runs, walks, hits, runs scored, and batting average. She was also named First-Team All-Area by the Gainesville Times in 2009 as well as receiving UCHS Most Hustle Awards during her career. Academically, Seabolt was an Honor Roll member during her freshman, sophomore, and junior years.
Shuman has been a varsity letter winner from 2007-10 during her career at SCHS under Coach Billy Pollock. In 2010, she finished with a .412 batting average, including 35 hits and 15 stolen bases. Shuman has been named to the All-Region 3-AA Team during her high school career while also being named Statesboro Herald's Prep Sports Athlete of the Week on September 2, 2010. During the summer of 2010, she hit .395 while stealing 14 bases for Coach Jeff Rainwater and the Georgia Thunder. Academically, Shuman holds a 3.8 GPA while ranking 15 out of 222 students. She is also a member of the National Honor Society and National Technical Honor Society.