About two percent of all high school student athletes go on to compete at the NCAA D1 level. Today, four St. John’s seniors signed a National Letter of Intent or NLI to compete in D1 NCAA athletics. Carson ’17 and Kate Copeland ’17 are headed to Northwestern next fall to join the tradition of Maverick–Wildcat lacrosse players. Left handed pitcher Joe Gobillot ’17 will be throwing for the Vanderbilt Commodores, and Sarah Grace Ritter ’17 is going to Kent State to play field hockey for the Golden Eagles.
“Sarah Grace has become a wonderful role model for the field hockey program," according to Assistant Field Hockey Coach Gordon Center. "Starting in seventh grade she has worked hard and continued to accept feedback to improve her game.”
“This is a real exciting day and it means a lot to me,” said Ritter. “It took a lot of effort and hard work, and today it finally paid off. Plus there’s a lot more to come.”
“I had this day marked on my calendar since my freshman year and it has been my dream that finally came true,” said Joe. “I’m excited to start playing and prove myself to everyone at the next level in the SEC.”
“He’s a top-notch pitcher, and a quality young man who does things the right way,” said Riley. “He wanted to be real good.”
St. John’s Head Lacrosse Coach Angie Kensinger described the Copeland twins as “a dynamic duo,” and “lightning in a bottle.” “They are the kind of players you want on your team and do not want to compete against.”
Nell Copeland ’15, Lindsey McKone ’16, and former Houston Ranger teammate, Lyndsey Lafitte will be awaiting the arrival of Carson and Kate next fall, giving the Wildcats five Houston players. Maverick assistant coach Jess Carroll ’11 started the Northwestern trend for St. John’s, arriving as the first player from Houston and leaving as a NCAA national champion.
“This means so much to me,” said Kate.
“I’m looking forward to playing on that team,” said Carson.
“This is a culmination of a long process,” said Athletic Director Vince Arduini. “The St. John’s athletic department has the highest respect for these four student athletes.”