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National Signing Day at Jacksonville High School

Abby Mitchell, Staff Writer

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As the school year is quickly winding by, senior students are beginning to make their decisions on life after high school, and many are choosing sports. Last Wednesday, February 1, National Signing Day, allowed many high school students to commit to their college sport for the next four years, and Jacksonville High School was not left out. From JHS twelve students committed to a college athletic program from soccer to golf to football.

The ceremony began around 4 PM in the Media Center. After a short introduction by athletic director, Joey Dion, each coach shared a few words about each potential athlete. Coaches shared stories about the player as well as statistics that each individual was able to gain throughout his or her time on the high school team. After the players were spoken about by their coaches, it was then time to sign.

For many outgoing seniors, college commitment has proven to be a difficult decision. Fortunately , each one of these athletes has been exposed to both commitment and decision making throughout their high school athletic careers. They have been shaped by coaches to not only do well on the field or course but also in life. With each student picking up their pens and signing their names, they were made a college athlete.

After the ceremony commenced, interviews from news reporters were soon conducted with the athletes. Students were asked why they truly picked the school that they did and a particular student, Ariel Mansholt, who committed to playing soccer at Southwestern University in Georgetown, Texas, said, “When I visited I really enjoyed getting to know all of the girls, and the coach there is the best, so I thought that Georgetown would be a really good fit for me.”

The students who were featured at the national signing day ceremony on Wednesday included John Gibbons (men’s soccer at Illinois College), Tyler Degroot (men’s soccer at Illinois College), Ryan Kaufmann (men’s golf at Illinois College), Steven Albers (men’s soccer at University of Illinois Springfield), Corey Ruyle (football at Quincy University), Adam Hillis (football at Quincy University), James White (football at Fullerton College in California), Grant Flynn (men’s soccer at Lincoln Land Community College), Levi Parkevich (football at Illinois College), Ariel Mansholt (women’s soccer at Southwestern University in Texas), Hunter Hartsook (football at St. Ambrose University), and Klay Wood (football at Truman State University).             

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National Signing Day at Jacksonville High School