Rodas ‘humbled’ with interested colleges
2020 softball player from Rhode Island stays close to home to play at Massachusetts-Dartmouth
April 3, 2020
By Jon Feyen
Dyonna Rodas was the first to admit — she didn’t do a great job with her recruiting early on. But thanks to persistence and the connections of ScoutU, she ended up finding the college softball program she was looking for.
Recently, Rodas committed to the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth, an NCAA Division III school. The 2020 recruit received double-digit offers, including a pair at the Division I level, but selected the program that fit her best.
“I was extremely honored and humbled with the amount of choices I had,” Rodas said. “Pretty much all my opportunities outside of New England came in the past year, which I believe is directly related to my ScoutU relationship. When I first talked to (ScoutU Scout) Scott Woodcock, my goal was to not close the door on getting better D1 offers.
“But the more time went on, the less important that became, because I had a good base of schools to choose from. Scott was able to give me some southern schools to choose from, which was nice, because when I was younger my goals were to play down south. It was nice to have those choices and conversations about the pros and cons of going to school far from home.”
The UMD Corsairs have posted a winning record each of the last four years. Woodcock has no doubt that Rodas will fit right in with the team.
“Dyonna played for a highly competitive organization that’s developing a strong reputation in the Northeast,” Woodcock said. “She had a solid foundation when it came to her skill set and was coached well, so I was excited to see her develop and where she’d end up. Dyonna had more than 10 offers waiting for her, so we just needed to set up the visits and that was so exciting.”
Rodas was named to All-State following her sophomore year at Pilgrim High School in Rhode Island. The fact that UMass Dartmouth is just 1 hour from home became a major factor in her decision.
“As my senior year approached, staying closer to home became more important to me,” Rodas said. “I also like that the school puts a big emphasis on their sports programs, which I noticed in the facilities and field conditions during my visits. The No. 1 reason is that during the recruiting process Coach Sasin and Coach Huckabee always made me feel wanted, as though UMass Dartmouth could be my home away from home. Coach Huckabee attended many of my games the past few years and that did not go unnoticed. I am excited for the opportunity to play for coaches who believe in my ability.”
Woodcock was impressed with the maturity of Rodas, who complemented her 1100 SAT score with great on-field metrics (1.89 pop time, .597 slugging).
“Part of the process in what we do involves time management, which most adults struggle with their whole life,” Woodcock said. “I like that our ScoutU process teaches life skills while guiding the kids through the recruiting side of it. College coaches like that aspect as well, because they want responsible and accountable young athletes who make their program better. Dyonna embraced things well, and it was awesome to see her mature through the process.”
Rodas, who plans on majoring in criminal justice, is thrilled that she’ll be able to continue her athletic career.
“Deep inside I knew UMass Dartmouth was the place for me,” Rodas said. “Scott was certainly helpful with his advice on so many other things. He told me what to put in and leave out of my recruiting video and emails. He also helped me prepare for my visits, and he’d always text us to see how things were going. I do truly appreciate his help.”
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“I was extremely honored and humbled with the amount of choices I had. Pretty much all my opportunities outside of New England came in the past year, which I believe is directly related to my ScoutU relationship. … Scott was certainly helpful with his advice on so many other things. He told me what to put in and leave out of my recruiting video and emails. He also helped me prepare for my visits, and he’d always text us to see how things were going. I do truly appreciate his help.”
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