Pariss Cruce has played a vital part in the success of the Florence High School girls tennis team the past few years.
She will continue her tennis career, after signing a tennis scholarship to play at Faulkner State Community College in Bay Minnette.
Pariss will be the third generation of Cruces to play collegiate sports on scholarship. Cruce’s grandfather, Ferdy Cruce, played football at Coffee and then Alabama. Her father Brian played basketball at Coffee, then at Troy and Tennessee Tech.
I sat down with Pariss and her future coach, Dr. Ritchie Dulaney, of Faulkner State, to ask a few questions about the next chapter of her academic and athletic career.
Question: What did you like most about Faulkner State?
Cruce: I really liked the location of the school(20 minutes from Gulf Shores), as well as how I will be supported by a tennis family and a coach with both school and tennis. Coach Dulaney has been very helpful and supportive during the recruiting process and I can’t wait to play with a team led by her.
Question: What impressed you about the campus?
Cruce: I love the new athletic dorms. They are laid out perfectly. I also can’t wait to live so close to the beach.
Question: Did you meet any of your future teammates on your visit?
Cruce: Yes. I was able to play and hang out with several players. They were all great and I look forward to getting to know them better.
Coach Dulaney said she is excited to get a player from North Alabama and one of Cruce’s personality and caliber.
Question: What makes Pariss a good fit for Faulkner State?
Dulaney: More than anything, her dedication to the sport. She is very determined and has strong basic skills.
Question: How many players have you signed from the Florence area?
Dulaney: Pariss will be the first tennis player. I’m excited to start relationships in north Alabama.
Question: What is the attraction for players to attend Faulkner State?
Dulaney: Faulkner provides a solid beginning foundation for athletes and academics.