By Johnny Sanders, Sports Editor
TRUSSVILLE – Hewitt Trussville High School held a ceremony on Wednesday to celebrate the signing of 13 different athletes, spanning 6 different sports, to continue perfecting their craft at the collegiate level. Boys Golf, Girls Golf, Girls Cross Country, Basketball, Baseball and, of course, Softball all took center stage in the auditorium on the campus of Hewit Trussville High School.
Golfer Gavin Isbell signed to play at Samford University in Birmingham, Alabama, staying close to home. “This is really surreal,” said Isbell. “I want to thank God first. In ever situation, He has a plan for me. I would like to thank my family, friends and coaches for all of their support. I would also like to thank Coach Del Greco at Samford for giving me this opportunity.”
Aubrey Payne of the Girls Golf team signed to play at Union University in Hendersonville, Tennessee. Payne said, “I would like to thank God, my mom and my dad, my brother and my family and friends and mostly my teammates.”
Cross Country had two girls who signed today.
Kinley Harris signed with Mississippi College in Clinton, Mississippi, the oldest college in the state. “Thank you to my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. I believe He has a lot in store for me. Thank you to my parents and my little brother. Thank you to my coaches, who I have had 6 years with. Thank you to my future coaches at Mississippi College and to my team here at Hewitt.”
The second of the two signees are Avery Cahoon, who signed to run at Florida State University for the Seminoles. Cahoon said the following, “I want to thank God, who has blessed me with the ability to run. My parents for being my biggest supporters. My dad, who encouraged me every Sunday to email college coaches, even though I didn’t want to. You were right dad. For my mom for always being passionate. To my teammates who helped me fall in love with the sport and to the coaches at FSU.”
The next signee was girls’ basketball player Jordan Hunter, who’s mother, Tonya, is also her head basketball coach at Hewitt. Jordan signed with Auburn University.
Coach Hunter spoke first about her daughter. “I was not going to speak, but I was told today that I’m a mother and I should. Being a coach’s child is hard and then, being coached by the same person is even harder. Jordan, you had to watch me be there for other kids that were not ours, as their coach, and that could not have been tough. We did not force Jordan to play basketball, but she was hearing basketball in the womb. So maybe she didn’t really have a choice. I want you to know that I am proud of you. You pushed through the adversity. Enjoy this day. Enjoy this moment and keep God first. Keep pushing.”
Jordan then spoke. “I had a speech planned out and was doing good until my mom spoke of me. First, thank God for bringing me this far. Without Him I wouldn’t have this ability. I would like to thank my coaches and teachers. Thank Coach Parr and Johnson. My mom and my dad, who are not just my coaches but my parents. Everyone talks about how hard it is to be a coach’s kid but I know how hard it was to coach me for 6 years. Big thank you to my brother who sacrificed so much for me. I would like to thank all of my AAU coaches. I have dreamed of this since I was 12. This is nothing like I have ever imagined. I’d like to thank my teammates, especially the ones in front of me. Yall are my sisters. I would like to thank Auburn and their coaches as well.”
Jeff Mauldin’s baseball team had two players to sign their letters today as well.
Brett Moseley led things off for baseball, signing his letter to play at Ole Miss. “I want to thank God for this opportunity and ability to play baseball. I literally would not be standing here without Him. Next I want to thank my mom and dad. The amount of time and effort they have put into this for me and my sisters is actually ridiculous. I love them with everything in me and I know they love me the same. I want to thank my sisters, Devin and Tate. It blows peoples’ minds when I tell them that I cannot remember a time where we have ever argued. I am thankful for them. I want to thank my teachers, baseball and football coaches. Thank you to the coaches at Ole Miss who are taking a chance on me. I want to thank my teammates and close friends especially, who have been through it all with me. No matter how far I make it in life, I will never forget where I came from. I’m ready to get after it one more time with my boys! Hotty Toddy!”
Carson Wideman signed to play at Montevallo and had the following to say, “First I’d like to thank Jesus Christ for the opportunity and talent to play at this level. Without Him this is not possible. I’d like to thank my family and my coaches and teammates. With that said, Go Falcons!”
Softball led all sports with 6 signees on the day, almost half of the total number coming from Taylor Burt’s state championship team.
First up was Olivia Faggard, who is attending the University of Louisiana Monroe. Faggard said, “I thank God for giving me the ability to play this sport. I want to thank my family who put me on the field 13 years ago. Thank you to my brother who has dealt with the hectic schedules. I also want to thank my Pawpaw who, even though he is not here physically, he shows his support through a yellow butterfly. I want to thank coaches and teammates as well. Yall are my sisters and we have shared unforgettable memories. I am so thankful to be a part of a program that, while we work on the field, when we leave the field, we are family. Thank you to the Louisiana Monroe staff. Go Huskies and Go Warhawks!”
Next up was Lexie Kelly, who is signing with Wallace State Community College. “I appreciate all of the people who have played a significant role in my journey. First, God for giving me the ability. Second, my family for believing in me. To the coaches, you have been instrumental in pushing me and helping me. To my teammates, thank you for being my second family. Without all of you this would not be possible.”
Chaney Peters signed with the University of Illinois and said, “First, I would like to thank my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Through Him, I found that real joy does not come from throwing someone out, hitting a home run or even winning a state championship. It comes from knowing I have an eternal home. Not only did He commit the ultimate sacrifice for me, but he put me in a program that has grown me so much. Dad, without you I am pretty confident that I would not be on this stage right now. Mom, you’ve always been there for me in every bad game. Last, thank you to Coach Perry at Illinois for taking a chance on me. In the meantime, we have one more trip to take to Oxford together girls. Go Huskies!”
Sara Phillips, who signed with Mississippi State University, was next. “First, I would like to thank God for putting me here. Thanks to my parents for all the time spent getting me ready. Thank you to my sisters for always being up for trips to the field, even when we fought the whole time. Coach Taylor, thank you for pushing me and giving me advice even when I thought I didn’t want it. I would like to thank my basketball, volleyball and softball coaches who allowed me to play all three sports. I would like to thank the Mississippi State coaches for helping me get to the next level. Thank you to my family and friends. Thank you to my teammates. Playing in the SEC has been a dream since I picked up a softball. I can’t wait to see what the next four years hold. Hail State!”
Ahkeela Honeycutt signed with Gulf Coast State College in Panama City, Florida. Honeycutt said, “I want to first thank the Hewitt softball staff for running an amazing program and allowing me to step on the field with some outstanding people. I want thank my teammates for giving me an extraordinary sisterhood and for always supporting me. To my sister, thank you for your support and being by my side. For sacrificing at the field in the cold and being one of my biggest supporters. To my mom and dad for being there for me, long talks after bad weekends and helping me push through and for buying in and investing. I want to thank the GCS coaches for believing in me. Thank you to God for giving me this ability, helping me to get through some injuries and allowing me to meet some amazing people. Go Huskies and Go Commodores.”
The final signee of the day was Amber Newman, who signed to play at Snead State Community College. “First, I would like to thank God for this ability. All of my coaches and travel coaches for pushing me. All of my teammates, for helping me and keeping up with all of the stuff I do in basketball and softball. Thank you to the coaches at Snead State for taking a chance on me. Go Huskies and Go Parsons!”
The Trussville Tribune wishes each one of these student athletes years of success at the collegiate level.