Smith to continue softball career at Milligan College

By Ivan Sanders

STAR STAFF
isanders@starhq.com

   Many talented softball players have donned the Cyclone orange and black over the years, but none have ever had the prestigious honor of being signed to a collegiate athletic scholarship...until now.
   Sarah Smith, the Lady Cyclone centerfielder this season, signed a letter of intent to pursue her educational and softball career for Coach Wes Holly and the Lady Buffs of Milligan College. Smith signed on Friday in the EHS library with family, friends, and teammates on hand for the signing.
   "Sarah has tremendous ability as well as being an excellent student, and with her work ethic we look for her to make an immediate impact," stated Milligan coach Wes Holly. "Our whole outfield graduated this year, so we are looking for her to get a lot of outfield play next season."
   Being the first EHS player to sign a scholarship in softball, Smith was very pleased to have the honor bestowed upon her.
   "It means a lot to me in being the first Lady Cyclone player to sign a scholarship," stated Smith. "It was surprising because we have had some really good athletes come through the program and I was totally surprised to find out I was the first."
   The change over from playing high school sports to collegiate sports is often a trying time for most athletes, but the challenge this presents to Smith is one that she eagerly looks forward to.
   Said Smith: "It's almost like coming out of junior high and going into high school all over again. I run and workout to stay in shape. I also work as a lifeguard where I swim everyday, so I should be ready to go from that aspect. They are going to work with me hitting and bunting from the left side, which should also help because right now I bat right handed. I will be hitting a lot during the summer in preparations as well."
   Academically, Smith will be hitting the books in pursuit of a Nursing or Pharmacy degree. The challenges of being a college student-athlete are one that Smith realizes will present a totally different aspect.
   "I am going to try to do good academically and get the basic stuff out of the way," quipped Smith. "Hopefully, I will have a good year in the classroom and on the softball team as well."
   Playing for Coach Holly has been a special opportunity for many former and present Lady Buff players. Smith thinks that Holly will definitely help her become a better softball player.
   "It's exciting to be able to play for someone like Coach Holly," said Smith. " I look forward to the discipline he brings to the field and the instructions he will be giving me in improving my skills."
   Smith had some words of wisdom for future Lady Cyclone players who dream of playing collegiately. "Hard work pays off. If you work hard enough at anything and set your mind to it, you can achieve whatever your goals may be."
   Smith wanted to thank her parents, Lynn and Pam Smith, for their support of all that she ever did. Likewise, her grandparents have always been supportive of her endeavors to which Smith was thankful.