Transfer Allison Royalty Has National Title Hopes At FSU
A massive move this college softball offseason came when Florida State announced the addition of pitcher Allison Royalty from the transfer portal. A former Arizona State Sun Devil, Royalty entered the portal in June after learning that now former ASU head coach Trisha Ford would be leaving the program for Texas A&M.
“It was kind of a shock for everyone on the team when it happened and no one really saw it coming,” Royalty told Softball America. “So, obviously, it shook up a lot of things. It's always hard when a coach leaves any program and when a coach comes into any type of program.”
Royalty said that the decision to enter the transfer portal was not an easy one for her to make, but it was one she ultimately felt was necessary for her personal and athletic growth.
“I just decided I have two years left of eligibility, and my dream ever since I was a little kid has been getting to the World Series and winning it,” Royalty said. “I just felt like I needed to put myself in the best position that I personally, for a lot of reasons, needed to be in.”
During Royalty's freshman year at ASU, she made an immediate impact in the circle. She ended the year leading the team with 121 strikeouts and being named a member of the Pac-12 All-Freshman Team. In her most recent 2022 season, with an ERA of 4.86, Royalty stepped into the role of a relief pitcher with 15 appearances. Opposing batters facing Royalty hit just .269.
Royalty describes her experience in the transfer portal as being stressful yet fulfilling.
“It was a lot of change that happened, and I think change can be a good thing,” Royalty said. “It just takes a little bit of time, honestly, to adjust to it. It was stressful because I really only had a couple schools that I was willing to leave ASU for because I still loved my life at ASU and Tempe.”
The loss of recent graduate Danielle Watson, combined with the desire to build a winning pitching staff around rising senior Kathryn Sandercock, likely led FSU head coach Lonni Alameda to look into the portal.
“I think there were only a handful of coaches that I would want to play for or transfer for,” Royalty said. “Obviously, Lonni Alameda being one of them.”
Following just a few weeks of discussion between Alameda and Royalty, a commitment was reached and Royalty made her transfer to Florida State official. Royalty explains that the coaches and the supportive team mindset are what drew her to FSU.
“I think, ultimately, just starting from the very first interaction with the coaches, I just realized that that whole staff is something very special,” Royalty said. “Just being in that supportive atmosphere and having such an experienced coach and a staff that backs each other up makes the world of difference.”
With the addition of Royalty, the FSU pitching staff now consists of seven different pitchers including Sandercock, Emma Wilson, Mack Leonard, Makenna Reid, Madi Balk and Ali DuBois. Royalty’s transfer not only provides backup to the team ace, Sandercock, but also relieves pressure off the two incoming freshman pitchers, Reid and Balk.
“When you have several different pitchers that are drop-ball pitchers or you have some girls that are great left-to-right pitchers, I am hoping to bring in good up-ball movement and off-speed work and just a different look that helps grow a pitching staff,” Royalty said. “You need a great pitching staff to win the World Series, and I am hoping to be a key component and back up all the pitchers that are already there.”
Royalty’s ultimate goal of winning a national title aligns with the competitive fire of Florida State's team.
“I really want to get to the World Series and win it, and I think that drive helps everyone, and I’m really looking forward to it because I know that the whole team, every single one of those girls, probably has that same drive too,” Royalty said. “I am excited to just be another piece in it.”