DOVER – As Mia Fung and Aliyah Gregory posed for picture after picture before Wednesday’s signing day ceremony at Strawberry Crest, Gregory decided to try something different.
When a cell phone popped up, the future UCF Knight gave Fung and her USF hoodie a dirty look.
The brief scowl ended in laughter and more smiles as part of the Chargers’ five-girl ceremony.
“I couldn’t really stay focused in class today, because this is all I was thinking about,” Gregory said.
Gregory is Tampa Bay’s top girls basketball player. The 5-foot-11 senior has scored more points and tallied more double-doubles than any player – male or female – in school history.
Gregory, a first-team all-Suncoast selection last winter, said she chose UCF because it fits her style of play and because the Knights’ move to the American Athletic Conference means matchups against high-profile programs like UConn and Rutgers.
“Them moving into a new conference, they have plenty of opportunities to do big things,” said Gregory, who was also recruited by USF and James Madison, among others.
Fung was one of four signees from Strawberry Crest’s softball program. The all-Suncoast catcher batted .533 and committed only one error last season. She’s headed to Gregory’s new rival, USF, to fulfill a lifelong dream of playing for the Bulls.
“I’m excited,” Fung said. “I’m just ready to go right now.”
Teammate Megan Reed signed with Florida. She played first base and outfield last season and has a career .433 batting average.
Pitcher Sammy Tyler is headed to Saint Leo after posting a 15-2 record and 1.03 ERA as a junior. Outfielder Cacey Simmons signed with the State College of Florida. She hit .492 with seven home runs in her first three seasons with the Chargers.
“We’ve always had really good players,” Fung said. “It’s grown because the coaches get smarter, the players get smarter and we all grow together.”