It’s every high school athlete’s goal to play at the next level, whether it’s in college or professionally for their favorite team. It takes hard work and dedication both on and off the field and in the classroom to compete at the next level. When it comes to Bulldog athletics we offer a wide range of talent in each sport and grade, but it comes to attention that this year’s senior class is raising the bar for college commitments. From Division 1 to Division 3, the senior’s have shown that competing through every last whistle has won them championships for their team, school, or conference and has deemed them the title, “collegiate athlete.” However, when it comes time to decide on a school to play at, it can put a lot of stress on the athlete because they want to make sure that the college they choose will give them the feeling where they can excel both academically and athletically, and also feel a part of the team.
Senior Nick Mitter has been a member of the men’s varsity golf team since his freshman year and has recently committed to play at Saginaw Valley State University. Mitter has been named all-county for all four years since he has been on the team. He shows that going to numerous tournaments around the country and practicing countless hours really does pay off to get his name out to school. In the process of getting recruited to play collegiate golf, going to a lot of tournaments isn’t uncommon.
“Getting out to all of the tournaments was the most difficult part of my recruiting process, but I chose Saginaw Valley because of it’s close location to home and the coaches. Another reason was because of the business program they have, it’s one of the best in the country and I can get a good internship,” Mitter said.
Senior Haley McLean recently signed her letter of intent to play Division One hockey at Boston College. She has played AAA hockey at Honeybaked where she developed her incredible speed and aggressive play which has transcended into her winning a national and two state championships, as well as landing her the opportunity to play for Division 1 hockey powerhouse BC. McLean also had offers from other schools such as: Harvard, Yale, Princeton, the University of North Dakota, the University of Wisconsin and many others, but she felt that BC was the right fit for her.
“I chose Boston College because of the coaches and the location of the school itself. I’m really excited to meet my new team and play at the next level,” McLean said.
Another recent commitment to sign their letter of intent was senior Forrest Chong. Like his brother Grant, he will be going on to play Division 1 soccer but for Valparaiso University. Chong has been a part of the varsity soccer team since his freshman year and since that time he has made an appearance in three district playoffs, conference championships and earning the title captain for his senior season. Chong was also named all-conference player of the year for the past three seasons and made Third Team all-state selection for this season, proving that hard work really does pay off during the regular and off-season.
“During my time at Valpo I want to excel academically and be a true scholar athlete and not just focus on soccer. I’m looking forward to being at a school that is small and community-like so I have the chance to bond with my teammates, coaches and professors,” Chong said.
Among the “Elite Eight” of the state wrestling team who have recently committed are seniors Ryan Foley, Jordan Amine, and Aaron Calderon. Calderon and Amine will both wrestle at the University of Michigan while Foley will wrestle at Alma College. Senior Brian Archer from the men’s varsity lacrosse team will be taking face-offs for the University of Michigan and senior Lauren Cole from the women’s varsity lacrosse team will be playing goalie for Ursuline College. From the varsity baseball team senior pitcher Ryan McClelland will be playing at Grand Valley State University after his summer travel season with the Michigan Bulls. Senior Hannah Pietila from the varsity women’s golf team is going on to play at the University of Tennessee with her sister who is already part of the program.
Playing hockey at the junior level are seniors Joel L’Esperance, Corey Schueneman, Zach Diamantoni, and Kurtis Gosselin. L’Esperance is currently playing in the United States Hockey League for the Tri City Storm out of Nebraska and has recently signed his letter of intent to play at Michigan Tech. Schueneman is currently playing in the North American Hockey League for the Michigan Warriors out of Flint and he has recently signed his letter of intent to play at Western Michigan University. Diamantoni is currently playing for the Janesville Jets in the NAHL, while Gosselin is playing for the Alberni Valley Bulldogs in the British Columbia Hockey League. Senior Summer Green who graduated early last year is currently playing soccer for the University of North Carolina as well as the U-17 USA Women’s National team. Kat Farkas, a four year varsity player, has recently signed her letter of intent to play soccer at Michigan Tech after her senior season.