Pair of Lions Commit to Play Ball in College

HYANNIS — Hard work truly does pay off.

St. John Paul II High School announced yesterday that two of its finest student-athletes –  seniors Hadley Tate and Matthew Santos – both signed NCAA collegiate letters of intent to play

St. John Paul II High School senior softball captain Hadley Tate signed her letter of intent to play for the Providence College Friars next fall. She's seated here with her parents Nancy and Al Tate of Barnstable. Photo courtesy of SJPII Athletics

St. John Paul II High School senior softball captain Hadley Tate signed her letter of intent to play for the Providence College Friars next fall. She’s seated here with her parents Nancy and Al Tate of Barnstable.
Photo courtesy of SJPII Athletics

softball and baseball, respectively, and take their games to the next level.

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Tate, the daughter of Al and Nancy Tate of Barnstable, will head to Providence College next fall to play softball for head coach Kerri Jacklets where Tate is expected to step into the role of catcher fairly quickly. Providence College is a Division 1 school.

Santos, the son of St. John Paul II head baseball coach Mark Santos and his wife Amy, will head to Amherst College next fall to play baseball for head coach Brian Hamm. Santos is a middle infielder who plays either second base or shortstop. The Amherst Lord Jeffs play in the Division III New England Small College Athletic Conference.

Tate, one of the top students in her class with a 4.1 grade point average, is a National Honor Society Member (inducted sophomore year), has routinely been on the school’s Highest Honor Roll, was a Hugh O’Brien Youth Leadership Seminar selected participant (June 2013), a Student Ambassador and Reach Out Leader.

She has been a four-year varsity starter behind the plate at St. John Paul II (formerly Pope John Paul II) and was named a Cape and Islands League all-star as a freshman. She also received the Lions Best Offensive Player Awards and was a member of the Bay State Games Coastal team in 2013.

Santos, who played a key role in leading Pope John Paul to the 2014 MIAA Div. 4 state championship title, has been a three-year starter and Cape & Island League All-Star selection under his father’s tutelage. He is one of three captains already selected to lead the newly named St. John Paul II Lions in defense of their state title in the spring 0f 2015.

St. John Paul II middle infielder Matt Santos signed his letter of intent to play for the Amherst Lord Jeffs yesterday, seen here with his mother Amy and father Mark Santos, SJP II Head Baseball Coach, and the couple's daughter Allison. Photo courtesy of SJPII Athletics

St. John Paul II middle infielder Matt Santos signed his letter of intent to play for the Amherst Lord Jeffs yesterday, seen here with his mother Amy and father Mark Santos, SJP II Head Baseball Coach, and the couple’s daughter Allison.
Photo courtesy of SJPII Athletics

Santos batted .531 with 31 RBI, 13 SB  and 37 runs scored and was selected to both the Mass. Junior Select All-Star game and the Mass./Conn. Challenge. In three varsity seasons, Santos is a lifetime .512 hitter with 71 RBI, 41 stolen bases, 110 hits and 102 runs scored. Santos makes the sixth Lion since the baseball program’s first season in 2011 to commit to a college or university to play baseball. 2014 graduate Ben Gibson went to Quinnipiac (CT), Mike Young went to Stonehill College, Collin Russell went to Eastern Connecticut State University, Connor Kennedy went to the Massachusetts Maritime Academy and Ben Crago has transferred to Massachusetts Maritime this year. The Lions are 81-17 with three Cape & Islands League championship titles since the program’s inception – all under Santos’ father Mark’s helmsmanship.

“I’m real happy for him,” Coach Santos said of his talented son. “He’s busted his tail.”

Sean Walsh is the sports editor for www.capecod.com. His email is [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @coachwalshccbm