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Three Vikings sign with Centralia College

So far, three girls from Colton High School are moving on to play college sports next year, and all three of them are going to the same school.

Monica Poet, Mikaela Shelton and Joslyn Stansfield all signed letters of intent to play for the Centralia College Trailblazers. Shelton will be playing softball and volleyball, Stansfield is playing softball, but she’s hoping she’ll also get a volleyball offer soon, and Poet will be playing volleyball.

The girls have been up to Centralia, which is part of the NWAACC, to watch the Trailblazers play and to workout with them.

“I’ve seen [Stansfield and Shelton] play,” Centralia softball Coach Matthew Bajo said. “They’ve worked out with us. They’re hard working and multi-sport players, which makes them really athletic. That’s what we’re looking for. They’re both really good students, and they’re going to be successful in anything they do.”

Bajo, who said he’s coached teams in Colton’s district, said the whole team is excited for them to start. Stansfield, who plays outfield, “has a great arm,” Bajo said, and Shelton, who is a middle infielder, “has great speed.”

“I’m so excited,” Shelton said. If she had to choose, she said she’d play softball over volleyball. “I’ve put so much time into it … I feel like I’m going to get more places with softball than I will with volleyball.”

Centralia is about a two-hour drive from Colton. “It’s definitely nice, because you can get home on the weekends if you really want to,” Shelton said. “It’s not too far.”

Shelton intends to study child development and business, and she’d like to one day go into day-care management, she said.

Stansfield intends to study engineering, probably civil engineering.

Poet said she’s undecided about what she’d like to study. “They have a few good programs, but I’m not 100 percent sure,” she said.

For now all three of them are taking their education and athletic career one step at a time. And this step is big.

Not a lot of high school athletes get a chance to play at the college level, not just for the NCAA Division 1 level but at any level. The competition is extremely high across the board.

“Ever since freshman year, I was hoping for a scholarship in something,” Shelton said. “I didn’t know I’d get two of them … I was so excited.” The athletic scholarships, which include a tuition waver, will cover most of her first year at Centralia College.

“It’s a big accomplishment,” Poet said. “I never expected it, because I never thought I was good enough to do it. But then I worked really hard.”

Shelton and Poet plan to room together off campus. Stansfield said she hasn’t yet thought too much about her housing situation. For now, she’s just hoping a volleyball offer comes through.

“It’s interesting because volleyball is my first sport,” Stansfield said. “The fact that it hasn’t really worked out yet for volleyball is kind of weird for me … softball is my second sport. I mean, I love [softball]. It’s so much fun.” But it’s always been her plan to play volleyball after high school, she said.

Stansfield and Mikaela have played softball together for years, so Stansfield is excited that she’s going to get to continue that. But she’s still hoping for a spot on the volleyball team as well.

This summer, the girls plan to workout and stay sharp for their first season as collegiate athletes.



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