Prep softball: Hurricane's Fullen, Casto set future paths
HURRICANE, W.Va. - Addie Fullen is still reaping positive benefits from a play the Hurricane High School left fielder made in May.
Fullen's outfield assist that pegged Jefferson baserunner Lauren Lewis at home plate with the Redskins clinging to a 1-0 lead in the Class AAA State Tournament winner's bracket final got the attention of Fairmont State softball coach Rick Wade.
The play helped vault Hurricane into the Class AAA championship game, where the Redskins claimed their first state title by beating Wheeling Park. It was also the season highlight for Fullen, who was named to the Class AAA All-State team as a junior.
It also set the final stages of her college recruitment in motion.
"That was actually the play, or one of the plays, that made Fairmont State take notice," Fullen said Wednesday as she finalized plans to play for the Falcons in 2015.
"They came automatically over to my dad and were like, 'Please write down your number because we want to get in contact with her,' " Fullen said.
Fullen hit .425 as a junior, with two home runs, 17 doubles, two triples and 42 RBI.
With the 2014 softball season still three months from starting, Hurricane has already placed two of its key players into college programs. Junior second baseman Madi Casto gave a verbal commitment to Division 1 Campbell University of the Big South Conference just two weeks ago.
"I went down for a visit and it just felt like home," Casto said of the Campbell campus in Buies Creek, N.C. "It was a pretty easy decision to make. I'm glad to get it out of the way because this way we can focus more on our season without worrying about college."
Casto, the Redskins' leadoff hitter, batted .412 as a sophomore with nine doubles, three triples and 25 stolen bases. She was named to the Class AAA All-State second team infield, and is generally considered to be one of the top-fielding infielders in the state.
Fullen's strong right arm and ability to cover a considerable amount of ground for a left fielder helped Hurricane pitchers Courtney Rogers - the 2013 state player of the year - and Emily Davis avoid big innings throughout the team's championship season. A future exercise science major at Fairmont State, she said the team is looking forward to the defense of its first title.
"We've been working out together at Potential Plus and doing a lot of hitting stuff," Fullen said. "I think we're pretty ready."
Hurricane Coach Josh Caldwell said that returning players such as Rogers, Davis and shortstop Cassi Sargent are also receiving recruiting interest from a variety of schools. He added that none appear close to a decision prior the 2014 season.
"Addie's really our only senior starter, so it'll probably take a while longer for the other girls," Caldwell said. "With Courtney, there's some higher-level schools looking at her but they're not there yet."
Rogers, Davis and Sargent are juniors.
High school softball begins preseason workouts March 3, 2014, with opening games scheduled for March 19.
Contact Preps Editor Derek Taylor at firstname.lastname@example.org or 304-348-5170. Follow him on Twitter @ItsreallyDT.