CANTON – Cherokee County athletes took the nest step toward the college careers Monday when they celebrated National Signing Day at the Northside Hospital- Cherokee Conference Center.
Woodstock led the way with 15 athletes going on to college, including football players Caleb Conley, Drew Sheehan and Trevor Stephens, who will attend LaGrange, Kennesaw State and Tennessee Tech, respectively.
The Wolverines also saw three of their top baseball players sign -- Brennan Milone (South Carolina), Spencer Keefe (Georgia) and Josiah Siegel (Georgia Tech). Brynne Sumner and Anna Burnett will continue their running careers at Villanova and Georgia, respectively, while Lilly Byrne signed to swim at Tulane.
From the soccer team, Grace Barham chose Georgia College, and Megan DuMond chose North Georgia, while lacrosse players Brady Cordaro and Dillon Shackelford will remain teammates at Reinhardt.
Hayden Burns signed to run track at Eastern Kentucky, while Sofia Tunon will play softball at Georgia State.
Creekview was represented by 11 athletes, with four coming from the football team.
Andy Davis (The Citadel), Paxton Nayman (Army) Nick Pendley (Mississippi State) and Cade Radam (Kennesaw State), who signed during the early period in December, were joined by Jacob Graham (Reinhardt) and John Clenney (LaGrange).
Soccer player Maddie Rhodes will also stay in the area after signing with Kennesaw State, with which she had been committed for more than a year.
“I love the team and the coaches, so that was a big part of it for me,” Rhodes said. “The environment around them was just a big deal. You’re going to be around them so much, you have to make sure it’s a good fit.”
Ben Edwards and Ben Reed signed to keep their lacrosse careers going at Birmingham-Southern and Reinhardt, respectively, while Creekview’s softball team was represented by Brianna Stubbs (North Carolina) and Faith Richards (Reinhardt).
State champion golfer Jack Vajda signed with Augusta, while volleyball player Paige Cairns signed with Presbyterian.
Sequoyah’s Ryelyn Wells and Erin Dickson signed to play soccer at West Georgia, while volleyball teammates Victoria Ergle and Emelia Sengstock will go different ways, with Ergle at Shorter and Sengstock at Oglethorpe.
Football players D.J. King and Tyler Price will both go to Reinhardt, while David Traynor signed to play football with Sewanee. Emmanuel Jenkins had plenty of offers coming into the football season before deciding on Appalachian State after a visit last month.
“It just felt like home,” Jenkins said. “They have great coaches coming in. They have a good tradition there, and I just want to be a part of something special.”
Sydney Rosant signed a basketball scholarship with Brown, while Erin Peters signed to play golf at Georgia Military College.
Etowah offensive linemen Dominick D’Antonio and William Robertson signed with Northwestern and Coastal Carolina, respectively, while baseball players Ryan Lobus and Bryant Madden signed with Chattahoochee Valley and Maine, respectively.
Justin Sherrer was set to play college lacrosse at Villanova before switching to Maryland last offseason.
“I switched over the summer,” Sherrer said. “In September, I had been on a couple visits, and I knew it would be home for me. They’re competing every year for Big 10 and national championships. It’s just exciting to be in a great program.”
Brianna Garcia will continue her soccer career at Tusculum, while Jaycee Wallace signed to play softball at Georgia Highlands. Taylor Sawdy signed to play volleyball at Reinhardt, and Rachel Ransom signed a tumbling scholarship with Presbyterian.
Cherokee’s Lacie McCoy signed to extend her basketball career with North Georgia.
“It was just a big relief,” McCoy said. “Coming into my senior year, it helped to know I had a scholarship somewhere. I knew I could just play my game and have fun.”
Volleyball players Alexa George and Fayola Louis signed with Reinhardt and Life, respectively, while football players Grant Hornbuckle and Brennan Perry signed with Maryville and Findley, respectively.
Tanner Griffith signed to play baseball at Truett-McConnell, Danielle O’Meara signed a lacrosse scholarship with North Greenville and Ryan Clement signed to swim at Davis & Elkins.
River Ridge’s six-person signing class was highlighted by baseball player Ethan Anderson, who was previously committed to Georgia Southern before ultimately signing with Tennessee.
“I like the campus,” Anderson said. “It was just nice. I didn’t feel like Georgia Southern was the right place for me. The goal was always to play college baseball. I knew it would be great to play in the SEC, so, once I got the opportunity, I couldn’t turn it down.”
Softball players Maddie Denning and Callie Perkins signed with East Georgia State and Rhodes, respectively. Chase Tomlinson signed to play football at Reinhardt, while lacrosse players Sabrina Roberts and Jacob Haas signed with the University of the District of Columbia and Young Harris, respectively.