Triple threat commits

Senior basketball trio takes their talent to next level

Rachel Holt, Staff Writer

College decisions.  The two words that fill seniors with dread and fear as they face the dauntless task of choosing what school to attend or what major to pursue. For three seniors however, this burden has been lifted off their shoulders since the summertime. The three senior girls on varsity basketball, Lauren West, Jayna Green and Lexi Kraft, are all ahead of the curve by committing early to a college to play the game they love most.

West has committed to the University of Missouri Kansas City, Green to Northwest Missouri State and Kraft to Upper Iowa University. Unlike most sports, basketball committing doesn’t usually start until the summer before senior year.

“You play in the summer on a summer team, and then a bunch of coaches watch you. Then they will email or call you, and they’ll ask you to come visit,” West said. “I’ve visited probably like ten schools and I’ve had around five or six offers.  After I was done visiting all the schools, I wanted to go UMKC, so I called them and told them I was committing.”

For the most part, the girls always knew they would  play basketball in college, it was more a matter of where they would attend.

“I think I always knew I wanted to go there [Northwest Missouri State], but I didn’t want to rule out other possibilities, because I didn’t know what else would be out there,” Green said.

After receiving multiple offers and visiting several  of the schools, the girls started to get a feel for the teams and  began to narrow down the college they would play for. For some people like Kraft, the decision was easy and almost instantaneous.

“I met some of the players and I loved the coach and the campus. I just kind of knew I was going there right after I finished visiting it,” Kraft said.

Despite some nerves of playing for a college team, the girls are generally excited for the experience and look forward to bonding with their teammates and playing their game at a more competitive level.

“The school I’m going to is kind of rebuilding so I’m excited to see what that will bring for their program with the new coaches and everything so that will be interesting,” Green said.

Because college sports tend to be more competitive, the girls will have lots of challenges to face as they transfer from playing a high school sport to competing on a D1 or D2 level.

They will all have to adjust to the game because all the players will be faster, stronger and bigger. But these three are special players with special work ethic and they will adjust just fine. Soon enough it will be: ‘How will other players have to adjust for how good these three girls are?’” Coach David Diehl said.

As their four years of being teammates comes to a close, the trio will eventually end up going their own separate ways after high school and wear three different jerseys rather than one. And although they are sad to see it end, they are excited to see what lays in store for them in college.

“It will be sad to leave them. I don’t want to go to college but at the same time I do.  I don’t want to leave my family and my animals, my dogs, but going to Kansas City will be cool.” West said.