Seniors committing to continue athletic careers near and far


Randy Tevepaugh

Senior Savanna Estes signs on to play basketball at Miami University Middletown alongside her parents Shannon and Ron Estes. “I’ve always wanted to play at a higher level so I’m just really excited about the opportunity,” Estes said.

Motivated by family support, Rocket senior athletes signing to colleges are now seeing the many years they have devoted to their sports paying off in the form of offers and scholarships. 

Senior Raelyn States signs on to continue her softball career at Clark State University in Springfield, Ohio. (Kennedy Hendon)

Seeing their high school progress translate into real-life opportunities can make for overwhelming yet exciting decisions and opportunities. 

Some of the athletes who have committed to their colleges and have already done their “signings” include Ella Deevers, Hunter Hopperton, and Maysun Klimak.

Signing to college for a sport gives seniors the opportunity to continue doing something they love and enjoy. When signing to a college via the National Letter of Intent, athletes sign a contract containing rules and guidelines that have to be followed.  

Deevers committed last year to Division I Bowling Green State University to play soccer, then officially signed this year.

BG went 11-7-3 overall and won the MAC regular-season title with an 8-2-1 league for the 2021 season. This is the fourth year in a row the Falcons have advanced to the NCAA championship

“It wasn’t difficult for me to make my decision but when I made it I felt a little nervous,” Deevers said. “I wasn’t sure with myself at the time, but as time went on, I became more comfortable and excited for my future.”

Deevers chose to continue her soccer career at BGSU because she felt like she would be able to make an impact and win the MAC conference.

Senior soccer standout Ella Deevers signs on to play for Bowling Green State University alongside her brother, Spencer, and parents Cindy and Scott Deevers. (Kristen Morgan)

Ending her senior soccer season with a 16-4 record overall, Deevers helped lead her Rocket team to a MAC championship for the fourth time in five years. The girls also advanced to the district finals this year. 

Among her many honors, she was named All American in 2021 and 2020, All Region in 2019, 2020 and 2021, First Team Midfield 2018 through 2021.

Another Rocket standout, quarterback Maysun Klimak, has officially signed and committed to Division II Walsh University to play football.

“I believed that this was one of the most challenging and long times of my life,” Klimak said.. “I have talked to many Division III colleges and Walsh came to my school and I liked the coach that came and talked to me.

The decision came after talking to many colleges and trying to find the best fit, he said. Klimak was recognized as Player of the Game in 2019, 2020 and 2021. He has had over 3,000 total yards passing, 40+ passing touchdowns, 91.3 passing yards a game and 191 pass completions.

Klimak’s teammate, senior Hunter Hopperton, has also faced many obstacles when picking which college is the best fit for him.

“It was extremely difficult because I had a pretty good amount of options and to weigh a lot of different advantages from each school,” he said. 

Signing on to continue their athletic careers are senior football teammates Hunter Hopperton, Keisean Johnson-Wilson and Maysun Klimak. Hopperton and Johnson-Wilson will play football for The University of Rhode Island and The University of Findlay, respectively. Klimak will be playing football for Walsh University. (Polly Dierkens)

The University of Rhode Island was the best option for him, Hopperton said, because the environment and everything around the area felt perfect for him.

Rhode Island University is located in Kingston, Rhode Island and is full of beaches such as the Narragansett Town beach, Scarborough, East Matunuck, and Misquamicut. It is also near New York City and Boston