Lexi Sosa and Alyssa Garcia have won championships together at the high school and club levels, signed last November to play at UCLA and have been recognized as All-Americans.
Their future is bright when it comes to the what they can achieve, but the story runs much deeper for these best friends who click on and off the field.
Here’s a profile of the two standout graduated seniors from San Diego by Extra Inning Softball’s Brentt Eads…
Making Their Presence Known
I’ve followed Lexi and Alyssa for years as they made the successful jump up the age divisions in the Southern California club travel scene.
My strongest memory of Lexi came not on the field, but when she committed to UCLA.
Barely 13 years old, Lexi was already 5-foot-9 and had nearly two dozen offers when she committed to the Bruins in January of 2015.
A young Rachel Garcia-type already at the time, she was throwing in the mid-60’s, hitting prolifically and was playing in the Firecrackers organization at the time.
For Sean Brashear and Mark Thornburg’s 14U team in the summer of 2014, she went 42-3 in the circle and hit .478 with 16 home runs so, safe to say, she was well-known in the club world.
It was a quiet Saturday morning, January 24, 2015, when I published an article for Student Sports Softball under the headline “UCLA gets its youngest verbal ever.”
I was happy to break the news but didn’t expect the huge attention it would get: by the end of the weekend, it had received 75,000 page views.
The strong brand of UCLA softball, no doubt, coupled with the attention early recruiting was getting and also the growing name Lexi was getting in the fastpitch world.
Alyssa’s journey was similar: she joined that same Brashear/Thornburg 14U team in January of 2015, an already successful team, and the two started playing together when they were 13.
They eventually went to the Athletics – Mercado organization and in the summer of 2016 won the PGF 14U Nationals title and, in the memory I’ll always have of her, hit a monster three-run blast over the right field wall—a ball the lefty power-hitter absolutely crushed—to help the A’s beat the Corona Angels for the national title.
The team finished 2nd in the PGF Nationals in 2017 as they lost to a pitcher you may have heard of: Montana Fouts.
Not only was the loss painful, but Alyssa was having aches and pains of her own. She had a bruised patella during the PGF Nationals two years ago and then in September of that year suffered a badly sprained ankle that would lead to tendinitis in the winter and spring of 2018 before she would get back to full speed.
Lexi also was impacted by nagging injuries in 2018, but their high school team, Mater Dei High Catholic High School in Chula Vista, California, still made it to the playoffs before being eliminated in the early rounds.
The two vowed to make a title run as seniors and that’s what happened this spring as the pitcher and catcher led the Crusaders to a 31-4 record, the CIF – San Diego Open Division Championship and a #13 ranking in the Extra Elite Eighty High School Rankings.
That’s a summary of some of the on-field successes—not to mention both signed with UCLA last November and are half of the four-player class that includes Maya Brady and Seneca Curo.
- Top 20 players in their class? Check.
- Club national championship? Check.
- High school title? Check.
- Signed with their dream school? Check.
- PGF All-Americans, to play on ESPN next month? Check.
- Best of friends? Oh, yes… definitely check.
That last one might be the biggest accomplishment of all, for their softball careers will end someday but their friendship looks like it will last even longer.
Friends On & Off the Field
“Some people arrive and make such a beautiful impact on your life, you can barely remember what life was like without them.” - Anna Taylor
That eloquent quote is how Lexi responds when asked what Alyssa means to her as a friend.
“Lexi and I have been best friends since we were both in the 8th grade,” Alyssa affirms.
“We first met after I finished at an Oregon softball camp in Anaheim. Soon after that I joined the Firecrackers (Lexi was playing in the organization at that time) and practically hung out with Lexi every day. Our friendship grew stronger once we played on the Brashear/Thornburg team and Lexi decided to go to Mater Dei Catholic with me and I was so excited to start a new journey with her.”