On Wednesday, November 13, 2019, the sensational duo of Mary Star High softball made their commits to NCAA Division 1 schools in California their new homes at the next level upon graduation in late May 2020.
The senior duo of pitcher Alessandra Samperio and shortstop Ashley Rico both signed their respective national letters of intent to stay close to home and further their academic and athletic careers in college. Samperio will stay in the Southern California area and play at Loyola Marymount, while Rico will be headed to the Bay area and play at San Jose State where both figure to make an impact down the road.
Also, girls soccer senior goalie Kaya Lindberg signed with Northern Colorado, making it the first triple day signing day ceremony in Mary Star Of The Sea High School history in which three student athletes all signed with Division 1 schools.
In her three years at Mary Star, Samperio has a lifetime 50-21 record, 1.44 earned run average with 680 strikeouts in 142 innings pitched, while also piling up lifetime hitting stats of a .415 with seven home runs and 62 RBIs, guiding the Stars to two straight Camino Real League championships in 2018 & 2019, along with a rare CIF-Southern Section Division 6 finals berth, also in 2018.
"I chose LMU because it is the perfect fit for me," says Samperio, who is a two-time Camino Real League Pitcher Of The Year, two-time All-CIF selection and two-time Cal-Hi Sports All-State selection. "It's a religious based school which is something that has been important to me my whole life, and I will be working with a great set of softball coaches and players."
Rico, a solid all-around hitter with speed on the bases, makes her a dangerous asset who can hit in any order of the lineup, has posted staggering prep career offensive stats in her three years at Mary Star. So far, Rico has a lifetime .485 batting average, 113 hits, 11 home runs, 66 RBIs, 87 runs scored and 39 stolen bases. The three-time All-Camino Real League selection also has a solid .914 fielding percentage defensively, with just 16 errors in 185 total chances.
And just like Samperio, Rico's proudest moment at Mary Star was playing in the 2018 CIF-Southern Section Division 6 championship game against Highland, and both were a big reason why the Stars came a victory close to a championship when they defeated then-undefeated Carnegie Schools of Riverside in the semifinals.
"San Jose State feels like my second home," Rico says on her first official visit. "As soon as I walked on campus it felt like I belonged there. Athletically, the way the coaches run the softball program is what made me choose (the Spartans)."
Samperio and Rico return along with nearly the entire Mary Star softball team who went 19-5 in 2019, going undefeated in the Camino Real League and won 15 straight before losing 3-2 to Culver City in the opening round of the CIF-SS Division 5 playoffs. The Stars only lost one to graduation from the 2019 squad.
Lindberg was a vital contributor to the success of Mary Star girls soccer last season, as they won the Camino Real League championship and reached the second round of the CIF-SS Division 7 playoffs.