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Johnson, Richardson sign Division I letters of intent
Rockdale’s Candace Johnson signed a letter of intent to play softball at Furman Thursday. (Standing, from left) Travel coach Brian Beauchamp, Rockdale Athletic Director Jerrid Harris, Rockdale softball coach Justin Arrington and travel coach Gary Anderson. (Seated) Johnson’s father Craig Johnson, Candace Johnson, mom Beverly Johnson and sister Courtney Johnson. - photo by Bryan Fazio

Candace Johnson signed a letter of intent to play softball at Furman on Thursday.

Rockdale's star outfielder spent the last four years with the Bulldogs, including All-Region seasons in her junior and senior years.

Johnson was named to the All-Region 2-AAAAAA first team this year.

Kyle Jamison took over in June as the Paladins' new coach and helped guide them to a 17-35 record in his first season.

Rockdale's Breanna Richardson also signed a letter of intent at Rockdale High this week.

Richardson will continue her basketball career next season at Mississippi State after putting pen to paper on Wednesday.

Richardson enters her final season at Rockdale rated 79th nationally by Dan Olson's Collegiate Girls Basketball Report and the 28th-best wing by ESPN/Hoopgurlz. She is also listed as a Super 64 recruit in her home state.

"I'm very excited to be coming to Mississippi State. I'm really excited to get on campus and have the opportunity to play for Coach Schaefer, Coach Aqua (Franklin), Coach Hudson and Coach Harris," said Richardson in a Mississippi State press release. "I'm excited to see what's going to happen. As Coach Schaefer's first signing class, we plan on coming in and winning games, competing for an SEC championship and making a run into the NCAA Tournament."

Richardson earned All-Region 8-AAAA honors last season after she guided Rockdale County High School to a 20-6 record and the playoffs. She averaged 15 points and pulled down nearly 10 rebounds per contest for the Bulldogs.

"Breanna has an SEC body. She will provide an ability to play multiple positions. Like our other signees, she comes from a tremendous family and a great AAU program," Schaefer said. "Breanna is a physical guard who can get to the rim to score and rebound. Like everyone else in this class, she will offer a lot to Mississippi State University in more than just basketball."

She helped guide Rockdale County to the No. 1 seed in the region tournament a year ago, but the team's quest for a second-straight state tournament appearance fell short in a two-point defeat in the regional round.

"Breanna brings a lot of versatility to our team with her ability to play inside and outside. She is our go-to player," Gladys King, first-year head coach at Rockdale County said. "She is also a leader who provides experience to our team. Breanna is a hard worker. Even after practice, she won't put the ball down."

Richardson plays AAU basketball for JD Davis' Georgia Hoopstars program that was rated No. 33 in the nation by ESPN/Hoopgurlz.

"Breanna is a great young lady. She is extremely coachable and is a hard worker," Davis said. "She is an all around great player who is dependable and loyal. She will do very good things at Mississippi State."

Richardson, a Super 64 recruit in Georgia will be part of Vic Shaefer's first signing class at Mississippi State, joining top-rated recruits Dominique Dillingham and Ketara Chapel of Texas and Chinwe Okorie of Nigeria.