As the early signing period came to a close last Wednesday, three area high school athletes still found time to secure their collegiate futures.
Evans swimmers C.J. Hendry (Florida State University) and Martin Kata (University of Georgia) inked their way onto two of the top swimming programs in the country.
Augusta Christian's Lynlee Satcher kept her sights on the local colleges and signed with the University of South Carolina Aiken.
For all three athletes it was a dream come true.
"Ever since I was a little girl I wanted to go there," Hendry said.
"I actually never thought I'd be able to go because the women's program has really made a name for themselves."
Hendry, along with teammate Kata, have dominated the waters of the Aiken-Augusta Swim League for most of their lives. The pair are just beginning their final year of local competition before heading for the big waves of the NCAA.
"It's going to be a good year," Kata said. "There's this big feeling of relief. I really did want to sign early, and I found a school to go to."
Kata said he'll likely swim events in the mid-distance range in college. Hendry said she wasn't sure where the Seminoles would use her. Her best times have come in the 200 individual medley and the 100 and 200 butterfly.
At Augusta Christian, senior Lynlee Satcher waded through opposing defenses as the starting point guard last season. Before even picking up the ball to start her senior year, Satcher committed to the women's basketball program at USC Aiken with a signing ceremony last Wednesday.
"It's close enough to home. I think I'll fit in pretty well there," Satcher said. "It's just nice to have so much pressure gone. I can just play now."
Standing at 5'11", the Lady Lions' starting point guard easily towers above most other guards in the South Carolina Independent Schools Association. Satcher made the move to the backcourt last season under the direction of head coach Keith Walton.
"I've always been taller than most girls," Satcher said. "But as a point guard you're the commander of the floor, and that's one of my strengths. I guess I can handle the ball well enough, too."
The move to the guard position paid dividends immediately when the Lady Lions reached the SCISA Class AAA state semifinals for the first time in school history.
Satcher averaged more than six assists and five rebounds per game and was named to the SCISA All-Region I-AAA team.
Beyond the height advantage against SCISA opponents, Walton said he was looking out for Satcher's future basketball career.
"I told her because of her height she could market herself better as a point guard," he said. "She worked and improved on what she did last year over the summer."
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