Wednesday, November 10, 2010 St. John’s School
Jessica Carroll (’11) and Cameron Neal (’11) signed letters of intent in front of family, students, coaches and friends in the Ankenman Tradition Room on the Mezzanine of the Smith Athletic Center.
Many former athletes from St. John’s have made it to the division 1 level, either as a walk on or as a recruit. Within the last five years St. John’s has sent 71 graduates to the collegiate varsity level in athletics. 33 have played for NCAA Division 1 teams, and 38 have found a home on NCAA Division 3 programs. A few former Mavericks have captained some of those teams. Recently, Meredith Gamble (’10) signed last year to run for the Rice Owls. She was just voted the Conference USA Freshman of the Year. Catherine Franklin (’10), also Northwestern signee, recently received The Big Ten Conference Freshman Players of the Week accolades in the sport of field hockey.
David Hendricks, St. John’s interim athletic director, gave a warm welcome to the 50-plus attendees and turned the mike over to the players’ coaches. Coach Alan Paul, Cameron Neal’s football, wrestling, and baseball coach had this to say about his protégé player.
“Cammy is one of those types of guys who excels at whatever he does. He is an All-SPC high school wrestler and baseball player, but his motor was running full tilt when we first met when Cameron was on the middle school wrestling team. During one of our first practices I challenged the team to win the HJPC Wrestling championship, a title that I had been a part of for three years at my previous school, St. Francis. I asked the guys if they understood what I meant by taking the challenge to heart. Cammy stood up and said ‘what he is saying is that you need to hurry up and learn how to wrestle.’”
“Because I am small in stature, people have told me I can never amount to much in athletics,” said Cameron. “I just try and prove them wrong and give it everything I have because I am an underdog. I have this in the back of my mind when I am working out and I train as hard as I can.”
Baseball has been Cameron’s passion in athletics. With Lou Gerhig as his role model, Cameron performs like an ironman, never missing a game. He is also inspired by guys of his size. “ Pedroya is undersized, but he plays the game as hard as he can,” said Cameron. “David Eckstein is another guy I admire. He has trouble throwing the ball to first base, but he puts his all into it and finds a way to perform for his team.”
Jessica Carroll is equally passionate about the sport of lacrosse. “I just love playing the game and my family supports me,” said Carroll. “Having fun and winning is what I do best.”
Angie Kensinger, Jessica’s coach, has won three titles (THSLL and SPC) with Carroll, a US Lacrosse All-American, on the field.
“I am thrilled for Jess,” said Coach Kensinger. “She has loved the game and taken every opportunity to get better.”
Congratulations to these two outstanding student-athletes. St. John’s is proud to be a part of their quest to reach the NCAA Division 1 level. Future M-Stars now have two more role models to follow in the years ahead.
Click here for more on Carroll in Westside Lax.
Click here for Tulane's recent recruting class.