LAKEWOOD RANCH — Kaitlyn Kerrigan had never heard of Lees-McRae College until this past December when she was playing in the Orange Classic college showcase.
The Lakewood Ranch senior began talking with first-year head coach Cally Morrill, but it wasn’t until Kerrigan visited Lees-McRae, located in Banner Elk, N.C., that the school became her top choice.
“I knew I kind of wanted to go out of state, but I was open to anything,” Kerrigan said. “But when I visited Lees-McRae, I just fell in love with the campus and the city.”
Kerrigan, who also also looking at Eckerd College in St. Petersburg, made her decision official April 19 when she signed a letter-of-intent to play soccer for the Bobcats.
“It feels good,” Kerrigan said. “I call it a good stress. It’s nice finally knowing where I’m going though. It just feels great and I’m really excited.”
The center midfielder will leave for Lees-McRae in early August to begin her training program. Kerrigan plans to major in biology with the goal of becoming a physical therapist for a collegiate or professional sports team.
Kerrigan wasn’t the only Mustang to make her collegiate choice official. Fellow senior Doug Snell signed his letter-of-intent April 19 at Athletic Edge to play lacrosse for Saint Leo University.
“It feels good, and I feel like I accomplished something,” Snell said. “I’ve been working hard at the sport for so long, and it’s finally paying off and helping me pay for my education.”
Saint Leo first recruited Snell after he was named the MVP of the Dixie Top 150 recruiting camp for Division II schools.
“I kind of wanted to stay in Florida, and Saint Leo had my major,” Snell said. “I got along with the team, and the coach is a great guy. It definitely suited what I wanted, and it doesn’t feel like you’re in Florida at all.”
Snell, who plans to major in business, will leave for Saint Leo in August and begin fall practices with the hopes of earning playing time as a freshman.
“The coach made it very clear that he plays the best players,” Snell said. “I’m confident in my playing ability, and if I work hard enough then I should be able to get substantial playing time.”
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