Seven athletes sign letters of intent
Photos by Adithya Chari
Seven Conant athletes signed their Conant ceremonial letter of intent, which represented their commitment to their colleges, on Feb. 7. The athletes are 2018 graduating seniors and included football players Edward Gosche and Jack Reiger, basketball player Ben Schols, and baseball players Tyler Hedman, Joe Kawalek, Matt Majer, and Mason Sykes.
Athletic Director John Kane said, “We are really fortunate to have a great group of seniors here today.”
Gosche will continue his football career as an offensive lineman at Upper Iowa University, an NCAA Division II School in Fayette, Iowa. He said that the college felt like home to him when he visited it in December. Head Coach Bryan Stortz said, “What I saw in Eddy was a lot of hard work and perseverance; that’s obviously paid off for him here. He’s a well mannered, very good kid that does well academically. So I think Upper Iowa is getting a high quality individual as well as a good football player.” Gosche will be pursuing a career as a high school math teacher.
Reiger will continue his football career as a linebacker at Northern Michigan University, an NCAA Division II School in Marquette, Michigan. Reiger said he chose this university because its football program, its people, the school itself, and the fact that he will be able to continue his hobbies of hunting and fishing there. Reiger said, “On the field, I hope to be an All-American at least two of the years I’m there; off the field, I want to get a great college degree that will set me up for my future.” Reiger will either pursue a career in sports agency or athletic training.
Schols will continue his basketball career as a guard at St. Ambrose University, a National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) school in Davenport, Iowa. Schols said their basketball team is a good fit for him because the players there are team and community-oriented. Schols said, “They do a lot of community work with different organizations. They did a bakery sale for charity the other day for one of their games, so I would like to be involved in some of that stuff.” Schols will major in exercise science and then will apply for physical therapy school after he earns his degree.
Hedman will continue his baseball career as a second basemen at Saint Xavier University, an NAIA school in Chicago. He’ll join current Cougar baseball Sam Ryan there next year. Hedman said that he’s been playing with Ryan most of his life and that they have good chemistry on the field. Hedman said, “I hope to help Saint Xavier get some wins and get a good education.” Hedman will major either in finance or accounting.
Kawalek will continue his baseball career as a pitcher at the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh, an NCAA Division III school. Kawalek said he wanted to go to a school where he could form a good relationship with his coaches and teammates and knew this could happen when he met coach Kevin Tomasiewicz. Kawalek said that baseball teaches him to be a better person and teammate everyday. Kawalek is undecided in what he wants to major in but is considering physical therapy or athletic training.
Majer will continue his baseball career as a pitcher at Rock Valley College, a National Junior Collegiate Athletic Association (NJCAA) Division III school in Rockford. A factor in Majer’s decision to go to Rock Valley is that his cousin, Patrick O’Malley, is an assistant coach at the school. Majer said, “My goal is just to be a better pitcher and help Rock Valley get their first national championship and then, off the field, get the best grades I can and get a 4.0.” Majer would like to play an NCAA Division I school after junior college and will major in some field of business.
Sykes will continue his baseball career as an outfielder at Wabash Valley college, an NJCCA Division I school in Mt. Carmel, Illinois. Sykes said, “It’s an honor for all of us because the percentage of high school athletes going on to play in college is very small; it gives us more motivation to make it further.” Sykes said his goals in college is to do well in the classroom and excel at playing baseball. Like Majer, he hopes to attend an NCAA Division I school after junior college. Sykes is undecided in what he wants to major in but knows the school will fit him well from an academic standpoint.