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Spring Signing Week '16: Battaglia Joins the Bulldogs - Blue chip from New York Lands in New Haven
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After a stellar summer in 2015, Madison Battaglia's college recruiting search got more complicated. Always interested in the academic advantages of the Ivies, the 18-year-old from Cold Spring Harbor, New York, considered the other offers she received, but when the time came to make a decision, the blue chip relied on the experiences from her official visit to New Haven to select Yale.

Madison Battaglia is heading to Yale
© Zoo Tennis
"I looked at many other Ivies and then I looked at top academic schools outside the Ivies, as well," said Battaglia, No. 18 in the Tennis Recruiting Babolat rankings for the class of 2016. "I just had a large number of opportunities and a lot of great offers, so it was difficult to choose. But I just liked Yale the best because the team and the coaches and the professors were so nice and welcoming. They just had a vibe about them that made them different from every other school that I visited. I felt like it was a perfect place for me; the atmosphere in general was just really different."

Battaglia, a senior at Cold Spring Harbor High School, explored both the tennis and academic offerings on her visit to Yale.

"I got a lot of time to spend with the team and to see how they practice," said Battaglia, who took unofficial visits to several other Ivy League schools. "It was a lot of fun, because I got to stay with one of the girls. So I really got the feeling of what it would be like to be a student-athlete there, which was really helpful.

"I got to meet a bunch of the professors, which was really cool and nice as well. They have so much experience in so many fields. It just gave me such a warm feeling to be there and the coach did such a good job of setting up my visit so that I could see everything and anything I wanted to see. They were just so thoughtful, making me feel as comfortable as I could."

Battaglia has been challenging herself academically for years. After being home schooled in eighth and ninth grades, Battaglia returned to regular school to concentrate on her studies.

"I was taking a lot of [Advanced Placement] courses, and I felt like it was better to be in regular school - with teachers - to help me understand the material better and to prepare for the AP exams as well," said Battaglia.

"I took AP biology, and this year I'm taking AP calculus and AP economics. They are all pretty intense courses, and I thought it was most productive to take them in school, along with a lot of honors classes. They were all challenging."

At Yale, Battaglia is considering a major in political science or history, but she appreciates the options Yale offers.

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