COLUMBUS, Ks. — Four Columbus athletes were recognized Friday for their commitment to play sports at the collegiate level.
Three of them lost their senior baseball season, but will be able to take the field next year.
Clay Saporito will be a pitcher for the Crowder College baseball team. The knowledge of being able to play next year, takes some of the sting out of losing his senior baseball season.
“You know that last game you played your junior year is not the last game you’re ever going to play. Just to have that in the back of your head is a pretty good feeling.”
His high school teammates, Will Eddington and Alec Damrill will play for rival Labette Community College.
“I think playing against Clay, that will be pretty fun,” Eddington said. “I’m hoping I get to pitch against him, strike him out or something like that.”
“It’s just going to be really cool to see them (Damrill and Eddington) on the other side and just seeing them three or four times a year will be great,” Saporito said.
Eddington and Damrill both said they’re ready to continue playing together as teammates.
“Being with another kid from our team to play with me, you know, I think we’ll work harder and we’ll push each other to get better every day,” Eddington said. “You know I kind of know what we need to do and I think it will be fun.”
It was Eddington’s commitment to play at Labette, and his family history of collegiate athletes, that pushed Damrill to play for the Cardinals.
“He (Eddington) was going to go to Labette, I wanted to try really hard to get to Labette so I talked to a lot of my coaches, they tried to pull some strings to get me to Labette and get a visit in. I talked to the coach and it just really worked out. I told my friend and he was like ‘that’s incredible.’ So we’re actually going to be rooming together,” Damrill said.
Fellow senior Reese White was also honored, he will play soccer for Coffeyville Community College. He said the Ravens offered him a good deal, allowing him to go to school and make his mother proud.
“Just to keep playing, just to get a roster spot, that’s awesome,” White said. “Since I was super little my mom has been pushing me to go and do the best that I can with soccer, and so it makes me really happy that I get to go and make her proud and go from high school soccer to college soccer.”
White plans to focus on his general education requirements and major in construction management. Both Saporito and Eddington plan to study physical therapy, while Damrill hopes to pursue a career in nursing.