Choosing to play sports at the college or university level can be intimidating.
For 6-foot-3 Shalie Dheensaw, who imposed her intimidating shadow upon high school opponents as a Claremont Spartans basketball player, the tougher part of her decision to play for the Washington State University Cougars next year was facing unfamiliarity.
Dheensaw has played most of her past five years with the same players, and had hoped to have at least one friend at the next level, all-star point guard and teammate Shaylyn Crisp.
“I liked the idea of going to Washington for the (National Collegiate Athletic Association) but I considered staying and going to the University of Victoria Vikes to play with Shaylyn.”
Instead, Crisp will join 2010 Claremont grad Jessica Renfrew on the Vikes.
Crisp and Dheensaw are two of many graduating Victoria-area athletes going on to play sports at the university or college level next year.
Claremont leads the way with three students headed to UVic. Spartans midfielder Shannon Elder is joining the Vikes soccer team and 6-foot-7 forward Dominic Ohl will follow his father’s (Phil) footsteps on the Vikes basketball team.
Of course, not all teen athletes compete at university.
Reynolds grad Danny Paton-Cavanaugh is skipping the process. The goalkeeper signed a pro contract with Scottish soccer club Dundee Utd.
There’s also the curious case of Belmont’s Nelson twins. Carly is one of the top ranked Grade 12 volleyball players in B.C. this year and is headed to Thompson Rivers University.
An injury held Taylor back, but she hopes to catch on with Camosun College.
Basketball - Shaylyn Crisp and Dominic Ohl to University of VictoriaBasketball - Shalie Dheensaw to Washington State UniversitySoccer - Shannon Elder to University of VictoriaLacrosse - Mason Pynn to Stonybrook University (N.Y.)Swimming - Keegan Zanatta to University of VictoriaSwimming - Alec Page to University of Victoria
Basketball - Ella Goldschmid to Camosun CollegeBasketball - Demeko Symons to Camosun CollegeFootball - Tyler Fong to Simon Fraser UniversityFootball - Zach Rousseau to Simon Fraser UniversityVolleyball - Sam Jubinville’mah to University of New BrunswickField Hockey - Kathy Butterfield to University of CalgarySoccer - Cleo Breton to Dalhousie University (N.S.)Rowing - Sean Decter to University of Victoria
Volleyball - Brett Hastings to Dalhousie UniversitySoccer - Trevor White to University of PEISoccer - Abby Raymer to University of MissouriSoccer - Meghan Storie to University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff
Oak Bay High
Track and field - Zarria Storm (yet to decide)Track and field - Kyle Zosiak to Queen’s UniversityTrack and field - Patrick Psotka to University of VictoriaField Hockey - Kathleen Leahy to University of Victoria
Glenlyon Norfolk School
Soccer - Sam Hutchison to St. Francis Xavier (N.S.)Soccer - Jordan Fletcher-Berna to UVic Vikes
Rowing - Shannon Huff to Old Dominion University (Va.)
Golf - Cari Chow to University of VictoriaVolleyball - Carly Nelson to Thompson Rivers UniversityVolleyball - Taylor Nelson to Camosun CollegeBasketball - Chris Lequesne to Camosun College
Rowing - Jordan Friedman to University of Victoria
Track and field - Cody Therrien to University of Victoria
St. Michaels University School
Squash - Tyler Olson to Harvard UniversitySquash - Nicole Bunyan to Princeton University
Basketball - Whitney Hamilton to UBC-Okanagan Heat (Kelowna)Baseball - Alexis Miller to Dakota State University (N.D.)Baseball - Kaili Buchanan to Western Nebraska Community College (Neb.)Baseball - Gare Kobsar to Dawson Community College (Mont.)Baseball - Cole Holt to Jamestown College (N.D.)Baseball - Ryan Adkins to Jamestown College, (N.D.)Baseball - Brandon Magee to Jamestown College (N.D.)Baseball - Jackson Magee to Jamestown College (N.D.)Baseball - Rico Van der May to Cloud County CC (Kan.)Baseball - Cooper Skjeie to Cloud County CC (Kan.)Volleyball - Taryn Gmitroski to University of North Carolina