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Talking Texas with 2020 Softball Commit Carlee Ratcliff

Photo courtesy Carlee Ratcliff

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The Texas Longhorns set the bar high when it comes to collegiate athletics and even more so when it comes to recruiting. Year in and year out, no matter the sport, Texas finds a way to bring in the best athletes from all around the country.

UT’s softball coach, Mike White is no exception to this rule. In just a few short years he’s put Texas back on the map as a softball powerhouse. When you look at White’s 2020 recruiting class, there is no doubt that Texas softball is likely to be a well-oiled machine for years to come.

One name in particular that should catch everyone’s eye, is Carlee Ratcliff.

Ratcliff is a senior, triple-sport athlete at New Boston High School who in October announced she was ready to don the burnt orange.

“All my life I have trained hard, worked hard and played hard, to be a winner. And, I have always been motivated by teammates and coaches who thrived on supporting each other. 

“The University of Texas Longhorns softball program has a history of being both a winning program and one where the players, coaches and school have tremendous spirit and a sense of camaraderie. I wanted to be a part of that. I want to play for a winner,” Ratcliff said on why she chose UT.

Ratcliff is the definition of a star athlete. She was named District 14-3A Softball Defensive Player of the year whilst also receiving all-district nods in both Volleyball and Basketball. When it comes to Softball, Ratcliff is on another level.

In her junior season, she hit over.500 with 12 home runs, 53 runs batted in while also stealing 18 bases.

“I believe success comes from hard work. I have spent most of my life working hard to achieve my goals and dreams. Extra workouts, hitting drills, travel ball, and specialty coaches have helped me hone my skills and made me the ballplayer I am now. Sacrificing the short term, for a long term dream, is one of the keys to my success,” the star infielder said.

With the inclusion of Ratcliff into the Longhorn family, there’s no doubt Austin could have a star in the making.

Unfortunately for softball fans, this season has been canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Ratcliff, due to this national emergency, along with every other senior spring athlete at the high school level, has seen their final year slip away due to this virus.

“Losing my senior year of softball is one of the biggest disappointments of my life. All of the offseason workouts getting prepared, all of the practices, just everything we did to be ready, was thrown out. It just sucks,” Ratcliff said.

That doesn’t stop Ratcliff though from keeping herself prepared for her UT future.

“To stay ready, and continue working toward the dream of playing for the Longhorns, I have stayed busy. Our coaches gave us workout schedules, plus I have continued my extra training on my own. When the time comes to play softball again, I will be ready!”

Ratcliff has put herself and New Boston Softball on the map in recent years. Thus, she has lofty expectations for herself and the Longhorns upon her arrival.

“My goals are very simple. I want to be the best teammate to the other girls on the squad, and I want to do whatever is asked of me by Coach White and the rest of our coaches, and I want to win. Winning and being a part of the tradition of the burnt orange is a major goal,” Ratcliff said.

Mike White has compiled an incredible 2020 class that includes Carlee Ratcliff, Ryleigh White, Alyssa Washington and a slew of other names. White has invigorated an already great program and with Ratcliff’s commitment, it should be smooth-sailing for years to come.

“The fans of UT should know that I always give it my all. I always leave everything I have on the diamond, and there will never be a day, a practice, or a game where they don’t see me giving 100 percent.” 

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