By: T.J. Hug
THE VILLAGE REPORTER
As Noah Castle filed into the library and took his seat, the ceremony was ready to begin.
Ten Wauseon seniors sat at a table near the far wall as they faced the entrance. Family, friends, and coaches had gathered to show their support, as well as their pride. Wauseon Athletic Director Matt Hutchinson presided over the event.
“There are schools all over the country doing this today.” Hutchinson began. “But I bet most of them don’t have as many kids signing as we do.”
Which was probably true, as not every school is fortunate enough to have ten student athletes go on to play at the collegiate level. And an overwhelming majority of those schools won’t produce a single NCAA Division I college athlete, let alone the four that were sitting among their peers in the library.
Castle was one such athlete, signing a letter of intent to compete in Track and Field for the University of Kentucky. Another track athlete, Sally Frank will continue playing the sport at The University of Toledo, a school from which both of her parents graduated. Cross Country standout Taylor Vernot will be running for The University of Dayton in the near future. Meanwhile, Wade Hodges has agreed to wrestle for The University of Maryland once he enrolls there.
Two more of the seniors will be playing NCAA Division II sports in college. Natalie Koenig decided to play basketball for Ursuline College. Nate Suntken will be heading to Saginaw Valley State University to play baseball after graduation.
Peyten Shadbolt will also be playing baseball at the next level. His school of choice is NCAA Division III’s University of Mount Union. Unfortunately, due to NCAA regulations, Shadbolt will not be able to receive financial assistance from the university for his athletic services.
The remaining three student athletes, who will be attending NAIA schools, will be getting money from their respective schools to play their sport, however. Maddie Richer has elected to continue her basketball career at Huntington University. The third member of the Wauseon Baseball team to earn an opportunity to play in college, Collin Stump will do so at Taylor University. Golf standout David Williams will be attending Graceland University, located in Lamoni, Iowa, and he’ll be bringing his clubs with him.
Hutchinson concluded the signing with his closing remarks.
“This is an awesome day for Wauseon Athletics.” Hutchinson stated with enthusiasm.
Just one of many, most likely.
This was only the early signing period, after all.
T.J. Hug can be reached at