By Jordan Kroeger, SunCoast Sports
PUNTA GORDA — Charlotte High School continues to send athletes from the class of 2017 to the next level.
Golfer Jake Haas, softball player Tiffany Dodson and baseball player Shane LeMaster all signed national letters of intent on Tuesday to play collegiately in their respective sports.
Haas will take his clubs to Alabama to golf at Montavello, Dodson will pitch and hit at Miami-Dade and LeMaster will likely play second base for Eckerd.
For Haas, who was the Sun’s All-Area boys golfer of the year, team camaraderie played an important role in his decision to choose Montavello. He also had offers from Mars Hill, Tusculum, LaGrange College and West Alabama.
“I thought Montavello was the best fit,” Haas said. “For some of the schools, some guys had their own schedules and two or three guys would go out at a time. But Montavello was big on doing everything together as a team.”
Miami-Dade is a two-year college for Dodson, who hopes to use it as a springboard to jump to a Division I school as a junior.
“Miami-Dade felt like a home,” Dodson said.
“Florida Southwestern was also looking at me but I had already committed to Miami-Dade so maybe after Miami-Dade I can go to FSW or another two-year school.”
Playing close to home was a big factor for LeMaster, who is currently hitting .340 for the Tarpons. Eckerd is less than two hours from Punta Gorda.
“I was only looking at schools in Florida so that was one of the biggest things for me. I want to be able to be close to my family,” LeMaster said.
“I really liked the vibe and the feel of the campus and the setup. It’s right by the beach so it’s really nice. I just really loved it up there.”
The trio became the 10th, 11th and 12th Tarpons from the class of 2017 to sign athletics scholarships.
3 PIRATES SIGN
Port Charlotte student-athletes Alden Goucher, Romain Reynolds and Alexas Barone signed letters of intent on Wednesday in a ceremony at the school.
Goucher signed with Concordia for track, Reynolds with Maryville for baseball and Barone signed with Notre Dame College for lacrosse.