With family, coaches and friends looking on, eight Blue Devil student-athletes gathered Wednesday to sign their collegiate letters of intent in a ceremony on the quad at Davis High School.
Participating in the noontime festivities were swimming standouts Tara Halsted and Marissa LaFreniere, four-year varsity water polo star Connor Stapleton, two-sport veteran Lee LeVerrier, three field hockey players — Kayla Robinson, Malia Fujisawa and Emily Barber — and tri-sport senior Kylie Drexel.
Drexel, an all-league field hockey performer, is headed to the University of Southern California to play lacrosse. She is the reigning Bay Shore Athletic League lacrosse MVP and a USA Lacrosse prep All-American. She currently plays guard for the first-place Lady Blue Devil basketball team.
Stapleton, a two-time CIF Player of the Year and National Junior Water Polo squad member with international experience, has committed to Stanford. He captained the recent Sac-Joaquin Section championship DHS poolmen and has been a key ingredient for the Devil swim team.
Halsted, also going to Stanford, joined LaFreniere as a member of the 2012 girls CIF championship team.
Halsted qualified for the U.S. Olympic Trials last July in Nebraska in addition to logging the Sac-Joaquin Section’s best 2012 times in the 100 backstroke (55.63) and 500 freestyle (4:55.70).
UC Davis gets a versatile swimmer in LaFreniere, who was the 2011 section champion in the 100 free (52.34).
On his way to Dominican University of California (San Rafael) LeVerrier has a couple of SJS crowns under his belt — a track-and-field title as a sophomore and a soccer championship during his junior year in 2011-12.
The trio of field hockey veterans will travel far from home as Fujisawa will attend Indiana while Robinson (Colgate) and Barber (Hofstra) are headed for New York.
Robinson was the Eastern Athletic League Offensive Player of the Year and Fujisawa earned Defensive Player of the Year during a 14-0 conference run that saw the Blue Devils allow only one goal in EAL.
Barber, a high-scoring forward, was an all-league selection. Drexel, Robinson and Fujisawa joined teammate Ariana Enzerink as recent selections to the National Field Hockey Coaches Association National Academic Squad.
During the signing party, DHS Athletic Director Dennis Foster praised the students for their contributions: “These young people are all great representatives of our community, our high school and our athletic programs.”
Foster went on to say a little bit about each of the eight before the group picked up pens and committed to their new homes.
— Reach Bruce Gallaudet at [email protected] or 530-747-8047.