Amazing Athletes Commit to College

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Photo: Villanova Soccer

Photo: Villanova Soccer

Photo: Villanova Soccer

Kamya Sanjay, Editor-in-Chief

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As National Decision Day (May 1st) looms over their heads, seniors at Maggie Walker begin the period of deliberation that will culminate in a choice- what college will they make “home” for the next few years? For some students, this decision has been coupled with a broader decision: a commitment to college athletics. According to the NCAA, more than 8 million students participate in high school athletics, but only around 480,000 participate in NCAA athletics.

Maggie Walker has proven successful in cultivating strong and capable athletes, and every year flies by with a slew of sports commitments. This year, several students will be committing to schools for a wide range of athletic activities, including track, soccer, and baseball. A few were kind enough to relate their commitment experiences and hopes for their athletic futures to the Jabberwock staff.

As a child, Kent Dickey (`18) played soccer all the time. He always had a soccer ball on hand. He will be taking his favourite sport to the next level by playing soccer at Villanova University on a NCAA Division I team. Dickey used to play with the Richmond Kickers’ youth teams, then advanced to play academy with Richmond United. He is currently on the U19 team, and he plays for the Kickers professional team.

“I’ve always dreamed about playing professionally, it’s what drives me to keep going. When I tell people I want to play professionally, most people just laugh until they realize I’m serious,” Dickey said. He amended this with, “I can understand- I’m just trying to find my own way.” Dickey is looking forward to focus on developing his soccer skills with a team of guys with a similar drive and passion for the sport. At Villanova, he will finally get a change to shift his priorities towards soccer. When asked about his plans before he enters the college athletic environment, Dickey explained, “I hope to develop more as an athlete, getting stronger, faster, and less injury prone before I leave for college.”

Cole Ragone (`18) is committed to playing baseball for William and Mary. He has been involved with the sport since he was 7 years old and held a long tenure on showcase and varsity baseball teams. Although he loves high school baseball, Ragone is excited to experience the spirit of competitiveness of college level athletics. “Although it will be a lot, it will be interesting to see what kind of player I become,” Ragone said. “I look forward to playing big teams and seeing how well I can develop myself as a player practicing more than five times a week and for around three hours a day.”

Since baseball is still in the thick of its season, Ragone is most focused on honing his leadership skills. “I think my main focus is developing as a leader, since I won’t really have that chance as a freshman in college and it would be important in my junior and senior years,” he remarked. Although Ragone does not have any immediate plans to pursue a professional baseball career, he is focused and happy on his present situation and incredibly thankful for the opportunity to play for four more years. “Depending on how I do and on my level of interest in the following years, there is a possibility of making a career out of baseball,” he said, “but it is not an immediate goal.”

Brooks Eason (`18), another member of Maggie Walker’s incredible varsity soccer team, is committing to Randolph-Macon College to continue pursuing soccer. He has been playing soccer since he was 5 years of age, and began playing for a club at 8. Since then, his trajectory has been decidedly upward. Eason is thrilled to play at a college level and enthused even further for the growth and development he will experience. “I hope to grow and develop by finding a passion I can major in and ultimately make money doing. In addition, I hope to learn more about myself and meet people who will ultimately change me for the better,” he said. “Through soccer, I hope to gain some valuable life lessons through the rigour and competitiveness of college athletics, as well as through the coaches themselves.”

Eason is ambitious but still undecided on the possibility of a soccer career after college. “I would like to pursue soccer after college,” he ruminated. “Honestly a professional career is a bit of reach, but I’ll always hold out a little hope that an opportunity will come my way.”

The Jabberwock wishes all of Maggie Walker’s talented student athletes the best of luck as they move on to the next chapter of their lives!

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Kamya Sanjay, Editor-in-Chief

Kamya Sanjay is a junior at Maggie Walker and is elated to be serving as Editor-in-Chief of the Jabberwock. The Jabberwock has arguably been the most formative...

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