TEMPLETON — In front of their home field at Vineyard Elementary School, Isabella Backer and Charlotte Forniss, on Thursday, Dec. 10, signed National Letters of Intent to continue their softball careers in college. Backer signed to play at Division 1 Elon University in North Carolina while Forniss committed to Division 2 Northwest Nazarene University in Idaho.

Backer has started each of her first three seasons for the Eagles and will make it a perfect 4-for-4 should the Templeton Eagles play spring sports in 2021, her senior year.

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Over her three years in the green and white, Backer struck fear in the heart of opposing pitchers she faced. In 50 games in her high school career, according to Maxpreps.com, Backer batted over .400 with a .409 slugging average, with 65 hits, 37 RBI, 52 runs scored, and 10 home runs, six of which she hit as a freshman.

Backer also played tennis at Templeton High School but knew for a long time that softball would be her sport of the future.

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“Travel ball started, for me, in sixth grade, and when I knew that was the only sport I wanted to play in college,” Backer stated. “We went on a college tour in ninth grade where we visited Elon University in the Colonial Athletic League. I attended a three-day softball camp and immediately connected with the coaches, players, and campus. I just felt right at home.”

Forniss has been a great softball player but played behind one of Templeton’s most outstanding athletes in Ashley Daughety, who is now pitching for Texas A&M in the Southeastern Athletic Conference.

Following the Eagles’ CIF Central Section Championship in 2019, Forniss stepped in to replace the former ace in the circle but had her time cut short as the COVID-19 pandemic canceled the 2020 spring season and now has the 2021 season in jeopardy.

Through work with travel ball, Forniss climbed into the top 100 ranked recruits via scouting websites like Flosoftball and Extra Innings and won her own championship, a PGF National Championship, while playing for the Firecrackers in 14U.

In 2020, Forniss pitched 15 innings for the Eagles before the season was canceled and posted a 1.40 earned run average with 10 strikeouts and a win in three games.