Danielle Dockx, Ashley LaGuardia and Kylee Pierce will join the Princeton softball team from the Class of 2018, head coach Lisa Sweeney has announced.
Dockx, a middle infielder from Pinnacle High School in Phoenix, Arizona, was a two-time all-section honoree and a 2013 all-division choice by the Arizona Interscholastic Association, earning a chance to play in the Arizona Coaches Association Senior All-Star Game. She was an all-state honorable mention during her career within Arizona's Central Division 1, and twice Dockx won Pinnacle's Defensive MVP award. Dockx was a National Faspitch Coaches Association High School All-America scholar-athlete in 2011 and a first-team all-academic honoree by Sports 360 Arizona from among the state's Division 1 and 2 players for the 2014 season. She played club softball with Firecrackers AZ.
Dockx on Why Princeton?: "The minute I stepped on campus, I knew that this was the place for me. I could picture every aspect of my future as a Tiger. I formed a great relationship with the coaches from the beginning, and the team seemed like the perfect group of girls for my personality. Plus, how could I walk away from an opportunity to play the game I love and receive the best education in the country? It didn't hurt that the campus looks like something out of a fairytale either."
Sweeney on Dockx: "Dani will be an immediate asset with her defensive skills as a middle infielder. She is a smooth and confident ballplayer. We expect her to make an impact not just with her physical abilities, but with her natural leadership skills as well."
LaGuardia, a pitcher from DePaul Catholic in Wayne, N.J., was the school's valedictorian and a three-time all-conference and two-time all-county honoree who also was a first-team all-state selection among private-school players and a third-team all-state pick overall during her career. She was the Star-Ledger's choice as the 2012 North Jersey Player of the Year and The Record also twice selected her as an All-North honoree. LaGuardia played club softball for the South Jersey Mystics.
LaGuardia on Why Princeton?: "I can't imagine myself being at any other school in the world other than Princeton University, and it is an honor to be part of such a vibrant community. For reasons beyond the obvious beautiful physical setting and surroundings, I believe that the academic and athletic challenge I will face will allow me to reach my fullest potential. My experience with both the softball coaches and the team solidified my desire and aspiration to be a Princeton Tiger. I am looking forward to all that lies ahead."
Sweeney on LaGuardia: "We are excited to have a fierce competitor in Ashley. She is all business when she is on the mound, bringing a presence and excitement for the game that will enhance our pitching staff. Ashley has the potential to be very successful in the league and beyond."
Pierce, an outfielder from Gregori High School in Modesto, California, was a three-time All-Modesto Metro Conference honoree and a four-time academic all-league pick. Her sister, Lizzy Pierce, is a 2013 Princeton softball alumna. Pierce played club softball for the Bears Softball program.
Pierce on Why Princeton?: I first visited when I was 11. My family and I were doing a college tour for my older sister, and Princeton was our first stop. The campus looked like it had just jumped from the pages of a storybook. I remember thinking that this was a place I wanted to return. Over the next seven years, I never forgot Princeton. I came back almost every year, falling more in love with every aspect of the school, the campus, the people, and the amazing education it offers. Once I met the coaches and got to know the team, my college search came to an end in my mind. Princeton truly was the college for me. No matter how much I considered other schools, I always came back to Princeton because Princeton is home."
Sweeney on Pierce: "Kylee has an intense pride and passion for Princeton that she reflects in the way that she plays the game. She is a spunky, talented true outfielder that brings great versatility from the left side. We can't wait to get Kylee on the field this fall."