A quartet of local athletes, three softball players and one baseball player, recently made decisions on their college futures.

LFO had two players, senior Keelie Mauk and junior Haley Stahl, recently announce their choices. Mauk, a four-year starter at second base for the Lady Warriors, opted to pledge to Montreat College in Montreat, N.C.

“I went up there and it felt like home,” she explained. “I talked to the coaches and I was just welcomed up there. The surroundings are beautiful and it’s really just like home.”

Meanwhile, Stahl selected Bryan College in nearby Dayton, Tenn. to continue her athletic and academic career once she graduates from LFO in 2021.

“Everyone has asked me why I committed so (early),” said LFO No. 1 pitcher. “But with the Education program they have it, Bryan was perfect for what I wanted to do in the future. It just fits with me. I can play and go there for four years, even if I get injured.”

For LaFayette senior third baseman Sam Adkins, Cumberland University in Lebanon, Tenn. was an easy choice.

“It really is like my home,” she stated. “Our family moved from Lebanon whenever I was seven to come to LaFayette, but I’ve always wanted to go there because my dad went there and my sister, Sydney, is there now, so I’m kind of following in their footsteps. I also love the coaches that are up there.”

Ringgold senior outfielder Dylan Wright will also be staying close to home next fall when he starts attending Covenant College.

“Whenever I went up to do my visit with them, it just felt like a good place to see everything,” he explained. “I just felt like I was part of a family. Talking to (Covenant) Coach (Doug) Simons, he told me that, no matter what, God is first. That’s a big thing in my family and he also treats all (the players) like his own sons. That’s what really got me on board. Then I met a couple of the players and it felt like a perfect fit for me.”

Scott Herpst is sports editor for the Walker County Messenger in LaFayette, Ga., and Catoosa County News in Ringgold, Ga.