On Thursday, Nov. 14, five student athletes, along with family, friends and KO administrators, gathered in Alumni Hall for the DI and DII Student-Athlete college commitment signing. This ceremony, led by Director of Athletics Debbie Fiske, honored five Kingswood Oxford students for signing their letters of intent to their respective colleges. Each senior sat behind a table with his family while a summary of their athletic achievements was read. They then answered questions about their time at KO, signed their letters, and posed for pictures.
First to sign his letter of intent was senior swimmer Ethan Brown. Headed to Villanova University in Pennsylvania, Ethan has been swimming on the West Hartford Aquatic Team (WHAT) swim team for four years and also swam on the varsity KO swim team his freshman and sophomore year. Ethan is excited to start the next chapter of his swimming career as a Villanova Wildcat. “Swimming in college has been a dream of mine since I started when I was nine,” Ethan said. “Signing to Villanova proved to me that all the years of hard work pay off.”
Baseball commit senior Tim Cotter was next to sign his letter of intent to Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, Conn. Tim started playing baseball at the age of five, and his KO debut was on the Upper School JV team as an eighth-grader. This five-year varsity senior is looking forward to continuing his baseball journey as a SHU pioneer and felt that the signing ceremony was a great way to kick it off. “It was an honor to sign in front of all my friends and family,” Tim said. “It meant a lot to all of the signees that so many people showed up to support us.”
Senior Galen Flynn signed as a soccer recruit to Fordham University in New York City. Galen has played on the Oakwood Soccer Club team, part of the U.S Development Academy, since the age of nine. After visiting Fordham, Galen knew it was the right fit for him as he loved the campus, coaches, and team. “Fordham is going to be tough but I couldn’t be more excited to start playing at a higher level,” Galen said.
Will Layden signed his letter of intent to swim at Providence College in Providence, R.I. Will, also a member of the WHAT swimming team, has been swimming for nine years and is excited to begin competing as a Friar next fall. “Signing was such an amazing feeling,” Will said, “I always knew that I was going to end up in a place where I would ultimately be happy, and I’m proud to say I have found that in Providence.”
The ceremony concluded with senior baseball commit Jack Marshall signing his letter of intent to Stonehill College in Easton, Massachusetts. Jack is also a four-year varsity senior on the KO baseball team this year and has even used his baseball experience to teach younger kids as a Camp KO baseball counselor in the summer. Jack described the experience of signing to become a Skyhawk in front of all of his supporters as a dream come true. “I’ll never forget it,” Jack said.
The audience, filled with family, friends, teachers, and coaches all seemed to share the same pride the signees felt. Upper School Administrative Director Lindsey Perkins was one of the KO faculty members present. “I’m just so proud to see the students that I get to interact with everyday go to such great colleges to play the sports they love,” Mrs. Perkins said. College Advisor Matt Waldman shared Mrs. Perkins’ feeling. It is clear that all of the student-atheltes have worked hard to get to this point. “Being able to sign a national letter of intent obviously means you have put a ton of work into your craft,” Mr. Waldman said. “These gentlemen have something to be proud of, and I am too.”