TJC athletic director Dr. Tim Drain couldn't hide his excitement.
"I've been here 15 years and this has been a day we've been dreaming about for a long, long time," said Drain.
The dream has become reality. Wednesday afternoon, Tyler Junior College welcomed its first ever softball signing class. The class includes 16 young ladies, most meeting face to face for the very first time.
"It's exciting to have all of them here," said TJC head softball coach Nicole Dickson. "It's the first time they meet each other. They've been talking for a couple of months. It's exciting for our team chemistry."
The players didn't need long to bond.
"It's been really exciting," said signee Haleigh Moore. "I love these girls already, they're so funny. It's going to be a great year."
Moore is one of three East Texans on the roster which also includes talented players from Louisiana, Oklahoma and California.
"I want to be apart of history," said Moore. "I want to make TJC have an amazing softball program."
Her new teammates agree.
"I'm super excited to be apart of the first team," said signee Rachel Brockhaus. "We get to set the standards high and bars high. We get to be the benchmark. Teams to come up after us have to excel from where we started off."
The Apaches are still a year away, from their first ever game. But adding to an athletic department with 49 national championships, the expectations are already sky high.
"Go big or go home," said Moore. "We'll see what happens."
"There is pressure but I think we'll win a national championship with the people coach Dickson picks," said signee Autumn McKinney. "She (Coach Dickson) picks great athletes."
Dickson is ready to win now.
"I expect to compete early and do well," said Dickson. "That's my goal for the program the first year is come out strong and represent Tyler well just like all the other athletic programs here on campus."
2014 TJC Softball Signees
Rachel Brockhaus - John Curtis HS (Kenner, LA)
Autumn McKinney - Van HS
Jacalyn Edwards - Oak Hills HS (Victorville, CA)
Haley Mills - Little Cypress-Mauriceville HS (Orange, TX)
Amber Landry - Ponchatoula HS (LA)
Autumn Holloway - Cypress Ranch HS
Madison Langston - Carlsbad HS (CA)
Grasyn Langley - Rowlett HS (Garland, TX)
Amber Pufal - Clear Springs HS (League City, TX)
Ashlee Gibson - Burleson Centennial HS (TX)
Marina Duran - Don Antonio Lugo HS (Chino, CA)
Haleigh Moore - Van HS
Jaclyn Molenaar - Clear Brook HS (La Porte, TX)
Breawna McCraw - Colbert HS (OK)
Ashlin Roach - Hughes Springs HS
Khandi Breaux - Orangefield HS (Orange, TX)
Brittani Whitten - Roseville HS (CA)
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