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Fifteen Vista athletes sign letters of intent

By: Matt Long/Telegraph Sports Editor
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On a night when parents and coaches were thanked profusely for all their support and guidance, 15 senior student-athletes at Vista del Lago were honored for their athletic scholarships and signed their letters-of-intent. Saturday night in the Student Union on campus, student-athletes were introduced by their coaches, who also took the time to list the many accomplishments of each athlete and then came time for the athletes to acknowledge those who have helped them along the way. With the 15 athletes honored, 13 who attended the event, Vista Athletic Director Mark Keeton noted that the school is not known for a single sport, but rather all the sports, as the school is quite successful in many athletic areas. Four soccer players are moving on to play in college: Haley Washburn to Harvard, Kayla Hodge to Creighton, Tim Fairley to UCLA and Brandon Wallace to San Francisco State, who was not able to attend the event. Representing the softball program, Christina and Catherine Guidry are headed to UC Davis, while Jessica Evans is going to the University of Puget Sound. The swim program also had three athletes sign letters, as Matt Zerweck is headed to Boston College, Mikayla Winkler to Texas Christian University and Stephanie Klotz to the University of Alabama. Five other sports also had one person sign letters, including track and field (Meghan Heffelfinger, BYU), rowing (Savannah Eldridge, UC Berkeley), gymnastics (Emily Novotny, University of Denver), volleyball (Maddie Kaim, Notre Dame de Namur University) and football (Logan Smith, University of San Diego). Vista volleyball coach Patrick Sanders wrapped up the thoughts of all the coaches quite well. “Signing a letter of intent is a big deal because it takes a lot of hard work to get one,” Sanders said. “I want to congratulate all the athletes for their accomplishments.” Track and field coach Mike Kozlowski added, “All these athletes are backed by great families, have a great attitude and a willingness to do hard work.” Football coach Chris Jones said it was neat to watch all the athletes grow and mature over their four years at the school, while swim coach Joel Garceau said of his swimmers, and the same could be said of all the athletes, “These athletes are committed to being the best athletes they can be and they’re the cream of the crop and that’s something to be admired.” Softball coach Robert Reed, speaking of his three softball players, noted that on top of all they do on the field of play, that they’re great people. Soccer coach Joe Esfandiary admired his players’ great athleticism and work ethic. Speaking of Fairley, Esfandiary said, “Our loss (to graduation) is UCLA’s gain.” Again, the same could be said of all the athletes who signed letters of intent. Keeton added, “We’re excited for the accomplishments of our athletes.”