That may be why Cartersville’s primary pitcher Annalyn Yantis decided to get the process over with quickly by committing to Samford University in Birmingham, Ala., before her junior season.
“It’s very calming,” Yantis said of making her decision. “It was very stressful at first and now that I know where I want to go, it’s a good feeling,” Yantis said.
As a sophomore, Yantis was a big reason Cartersville made the state playoffs for the first time in a decade. She was the pitcher of record in 24 of the team’s 27 games, going 12-12 along with a 2.43 earned run average. She surrendered 75 runs, 55 of which were earned, in 158 innings. She also struck out 151 batters.
At the plate, she had 34 hits, including five doubles, while batting .441, the highest on her team. She scored nine runs, drove in 12 runners and was walked three times on the season.
She was selected to the Region 5-AAA all-star team in 2012 as well as The Daily Tribune News all-county team.
The decision was made early because Yantis feels like she found the right place.
“There were a few reasons, but that’s just the school I wanted to go to,” she said of the reasons she chose Samford. “The campus is beautiful and I love the coaches. It just felt like the right fit for me.”
Yantis also plays the shortstop position for the Lady Canes and is unsure of what position she will play at the next level.
“They offered me as an athlete and that’s what I plan to do,” she said. “I’ll play wherever they need me.”
Samford is a Division I program in the Southern Conference and offered the scholarship to Yantis on July 4. She committed on July 16 despite holding other offers.
“[Yantis] had been looking at [Samford] real hard before they offered,” Carterville head softball coach Rick Holsomback said. “So when they committed to her, she committed back pretty soon after.”
Of course, the junior pitcher will be doing more than just playing softball.
“I want to study sports marketing,” she said. “I want to stay in sports.”