Fairmont pitcher commits to Southeastern

Rodd Baxley | The Robesonian Katelon Floyd, an all-county performer all four years as a member of the Fairmont High School softball team, announces her decision to continue her softball career at Southeastern Community College, during a ceremony Wednesday at the high school media center.

FAIRMONT — Katelon Floyd enjoyed her time as a softball player at Fairmont High School, but now she’s ready for a new challenge.

On Wednesday, Floyd announced her intent to continue her softball career at Southeastern Community College in Whiteville.

“I’ve had this goal of playing college ball ever since I was about 12 years old,” said Floyd, who signed her letter of intent surrounded by family and friends in Fairmont’s media center. “It feels pretty good. I’m leaving everything behind and going to the next level.”

As a four-year player for the Golden Tornadoes, Floyd earned all-county honors each season and served as Fairmont’s top pitcher. In her last two seasons, Floyd had 13 wins and 136 strikeouts in the pitcher’s circle. As a hitter, she batted .271 with 29 hits and 29 RBIs.

Cindy Thorndyke, Fairmont’s softball coach, was just as excited as Floyd about the signing.

“This is my first signee, so it’s special,” said Thorndyke, who just completed her fifth season as head coach. “When I first came to Fairmont I couldn’t wait for Katelon to get here. I’m excited for her and her family.”

As Floyd trades in her black-and-gold jersey for an orange one, she said one mantra will stick with her: “One team, one motto.”

“All four of my years we kept coming back to that quote,” Floyd said. “We had some obstacles, but we came together and that helped me. I learned to play with a team.”

Floyd joins a Rams program that finished the 2015 season with a 17-18 record, posting a 12-11 mark in Region X of the NJCAA. Southeastern finished third in the Region X tournament.

“We’re looking forward to (Katelon) pitching for us,” said Karlyn Stephens, head softball coach at Southeastern. “Her tenacity and willpower are impressive. She goes out there and gives it all she has every game. She’ll be a leader as a student-athlete.”

For Thorndyke, Floyd serves as the standard for future Fairmont softball players.

“The players are what make your program and Katelon has been at the center of that here,” Thorndyke said. “I hate to lose her, she has been one of the biggest parts of why our program has flourished the way it has.”

Floyd is the second Robeson County softball player this spring to commit to Southeastern, joining Purnell Swett’s Bristin Locklear.