Student Signing Day
Being a student athlete is no easy feat. It often comes with long hours as well as both physical and mental exhaustion. Despite these challenges, many Apex High School student athletes have pushed through and are now seeing the fruit of their labor, committing to college. Most recently, five AHS student athletes have committed to playing their sport at the next level. According to scholarshipstats.com, just over “7% of high school athletes (about 1 in 13) go on to play a varsity sport in college,” making this accomplishment quite impressive. Each of these athletes has a unique story to share about how they have gotten to this point.
Varsity softball player Kaleigh Ayscue has committed to play softball at East Carolina University this spring. She explained that picked ECU because of the environment. “The softball team was so welcoming to me. It’s also close to home, so it’s nice to know that my parents are nearby,” she stated. When asked what kinds of things she has sacrificed to get to this point, Kaleigh explained, “I think I’ve definitely sacrificed a lot of my social life as well as school, like not being in a lot of clubs.” Moving into this next stage of her life, Kaleigh is most excited “to meet new friends and start softball at the next level.”
Varsity volleyball player Lindsey Green has committed to play volleyball at Newberry College this fall. Lindsey stated that she picked Newberrry because it’s in one of the best conferences in D2 in the country. She also explained that she likes that it’s in a small town. “I grew up in a small town on the coast of NC, so I wanted to get back to local, small town living,” she said. To get to this point, Lindsey has sacrificed a lot of time, as well as many highschool experiences. “I was in the gym or at tournaments every weekend, and I had practice every week. It was also physically and mentally tough at times, but it made me a better person,” she said. Moving into this next stage of her life, Lindsey is most excited to go out of state, four hours away. She explained, “I’ll be isolated and forced to figure things out on my own. I’ll be forced to grow up and mature, and figure life out without my parents being super close. It’s starting a new part of life.”
Varsity softball player Kendall Bradshaw has committed to play softball at Gaston College this spring. When asked why she picked Gaston, Kendall explained, “I had a few offers, but in the end Gaston just ended up matching with the same views, and had everything ideally that I need to be successful in the future, like location. I knew I was gonna be happy there. The people there really made me feel comfortable. When I went it wasn’t the most extravagant visit, but it felt like home, and I knew that after it- because it’s only a two year school- I would be a better person. I knew I would be working hard to be successful and in the end come out who I want to be.” Kendall also stated that to get to this point, both herself and her family have sacrificed a lot. “My family sacrificed everything for me to be successful. I’ve been playing travel ball since I was eight years old. I worked three jobs just to pay for it. All my time and effort goes into softball, and I don’t regret any of it. Everybody asks ‘why do you do it?’ Passion for softball has brought me closer to my family, closer to coaches, closer to players, and it’s just a whole community that I love,” she explained. Moving into this next stage of her life, Kendall is excited for everything. “I’m gonna be able to live on my own, live with teammates, and see some of my family. You know, I won’t have to work as much, which is good. I’ll be able to focus on school. I’m gonna be a health and fitness science major, and I hope that leads to great things,” she stated.
Varsity lacrosse player Liam West has committed to play lacrosse at the University of Tampa this spring. When asked why he picked Tampa, Liam stated that he “really loved the school and atmosphere of the entire city of Tampa, with it being right on the water. He continued, “The team is coming off the season just having won a national championship, so I wanted to play for a winning team. I just really liked the school and the opportunity I had, and the coaches as well.” Liam also explained that to get to this point he has sacrificed a lot of time. “Especially when I was younger just training and putting work in at the gym and on the field at times when kids would be going to the beach or going to certain things. I would have to stay home, go to practice, go to the gym, etc., to work on the game instead of other things.” Moving into this next stage of his life, Liam is most excited to “be a part of the team and the culture of the entire program.” He stated, “I think being part of the team and college is going to be big too, like just transitioning from highschool to college- having that friend group and just trying to play for a national championship that I wanna try and win, would be a lot of fun.”
Varsity softball player Kaylee Kaufman has committed to play softball at Louisburg College this spring. Kaylee stated that she picked Louisburg because “it felt like home and the campus was better because the dorms were on the campus. I also loved the new coach.” When asked what kinds of things she has sacrificed to get to this point, Kaylee explained that she moved states! “I moved from Indiana in June. I got here and met the coach, and I really liked him. He really helped me with my hitting so I picked him,” she said. Moving into this next stage of her life, Kaylee is most excited to go to college and live on her own.
Apex High School wishes these athletes the best of luck as they go on to great things and applauds them for all the hard work they have put in to get to this point. Roll Cougs!