Hughes Springs softball player Shea Nelson signed a national letter-of-intent on Friday to play at Northeast Texas Community College. (Courtesy photo)

A little more than 12 hours after helping her team advance in the Class 3A softball playoffs, Hughes Springs standout Shea Nelson locked down the first two years of her college academic and athletic career by signing a national letter-of-intent during a ceremony at the high school gymnasium.

Nelson, who plays third base for the Lady Mustangs, signed with Northeast Texas Community College.

The Lady Mustang senior headed into the playoffs hitting .483 with four home runs, 30 RBI, 39 runs scored and 12 stolen bases. In Thursday’s win over Tatum, she went 2-for-4 with a double and two runs scored in a 14-1 win that moved the Lady Mustangs to 23-4 on the season.

Nelson saw action in six games as a freshman in 2018. In 2019, she hit .237 with a home run, double, three RBI and 12 runs scored, and in a 20-game 2020 season shortened by COVID-19, she was a .512 hitter with three home runs, six doubles, a triple, 22 RBI and 15 runs scored.

Hughes Springs is 106-16-2 during her four seasons on the varsity.

Northeast Texas Community College, located in Mount Pleasant, completes in the East division of the Region XIV Conference along with Bossier Parish, Trinity Valley, Tyler, Navarro, Paris and Kilgore. The Lady Eagles are 12-17 this season, and will face Kilgore in Kilgore on Thursday in a play-in game to see which teams advances to the regional tournament.

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Follow Jack Stallard on Twitter: @lnjsports

Sports editor

I've covered sports in East Texas since 1987, starting as a 21-year-old sports editor at the Kilgore News Herald before spending seven years at the Lufkin Daily News and the past 23 years at the Longview News-Journal.