Why Ana Serafinko Chose St. John's University
Ana Serafinko, a class of 2022 recruit from Southern California, made the decision to travel across the country to play college softball for St. John’s University in New York City.
A top-notch pitcher and power hitter for Cal Cruisers 18U Gold, Serafinko is known for getting it done in the circle and in the batter's box. At St. Lucy’s Priory High School, Serafinko was a four-year varsity softball and basketball letterwinner, showing her abilities as an all-around athlete. After spending countless hours crafting emails, editing videos and marketing herself to college coaches, Serafinko’s hard work paid off when she committed to St. John’s in November 2021.
Softball America caught up with Serafinko to discuss her recruiting journey and how she got to the Division 1 level.
Softball America: Why did you decide to play college softball for St. John’s?
Ana Serafinko: Well, I always dreamed of being on the East Coast. My dad’s from New York and I just love the environment there, and it is in Queens, so you get the big city feel without it being overwhelming. The coaching staff at St. John’s was also really nice to me and generally helpful in the recruiting process.
SA: What was the recruiting process like for you?
AS: It was totally stressful, but I did really enjoy the journey. It took me a lot of time to write emails and edit videos, but I think the concept of advertising myself really helped me get out of my shell. It was hard during Covid because no coaches could really go to our games, so I had to rely quite a bit on social media and YouTube to get my name out there.
SA: How have your experiences in travel ball impacted you and your decision to play college softball?
AS: I think playing for Cal Cruisers has really helped me because every weekend we’re facing the top players in the nation. I’m facing the top hitters and it is really difficult, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.
SA: What are you most excited for when you arrive at St. John’s?
AS: I think I’m just looking forward to going out there and playing and doing what I know how to do. I’m nervous about moving across the country, but I do have the confidence in myself that I can handle the softball aspect and do well on a big stage like that.
SA: I know you played basketball for your high school as well as softball. How did playing two sports help you accomplish your goal of playing Division 1 softball?
AS: Even though I knew basketball wasn’t my number one sport, I think playing it and being able to stay in shape during the winter months was extremely helpful. I enjoyed the competition, I loved being out there every week, and even though our team didn’t necessarily do the best, it was just really nice to play with a great group of girls and become a team.
SA: Do you have any tips for players who are currently going through the recruiting process?
AS: I would say just don’t give up. No matter how many emails you don’t get responses to, I really do believe there is a school out there for everyone at all levels. I did get a lot of rejection emails, and although those are difficult to hear, you can’t let those little failures get to you. It is hard, but it’s extremely rewarding.