Gio Lopez will take his quarterback All-State talents to South Alabama. The student-athlete from James Clemens was one of many who signed athletic scholarships during the recent school year. Photo Contributed

Athletic Scholarships For 2022-2023 Were Aplenty

MADISON- The 2022-2023 school year was a banner one for local student-athletes who received scholarships from colleges. Sparkman was tops among the four local schools in having its athletes sign to play athletics with 34, including one in Esports, while Bob Jones 27, James Clemens 13 and Madison Academy adding seven to the list of hard-working young people.

Some of the notable student-athletes to perform at a level high enough for college scholarships at James Clemens included Gio Lopez a First-Team All-State selection who will take his football talents to the University of South Alabama (USA). Lopez (QB, 6-1, 210) is a dual threat signal caller and as a junior led the Jets to their only undefeated regular season in school history. Lopez began playing football in the second grade and the feeling for football never wavered. Jack Mitchell was the 2022 AHSAA Golf State Champion as a junior and finished runner-up in his senior campaign. His talents on the links have not gone un-noticed as he had a bevy of schools reach out for this talents, but he signed with the Crimson Tide of Alabama for his college play.

At Bob Jones there were numerous superb performances including baseball’s Sam Mitchell. The senior team MVP and Team Captain signed with Alabama after carving out a superb senior season with the Patriots. He set a new career school record as a pitcher with 22 victories and set new season school records with 10 victories and 130 strikeouts. He also added muscle at the plate with six homers, 34 RBIs, 41 hits and 10 doubles. Fellow teammate Ben Arn signed with Southern Union after posting senior stats of starting 12 games on the mound while having an 8-1 record, pitching 63 innings, tossing 80 strikeouts and posting a .177 ERA.

Sparkman was led by two of the best female athletes in recent school history as Kennedy Langham signed to play basketball at Samford University and two-sport athlete Cassie Reasner could have played college volleyball, but instead chose to play softball for the Kentucky Wildcats. The 5-foot-9 Langham is thought to be the complete package as a basketball player who was a four-year starter for the Lady Senators and carried the nickname “Love Joy.” Reasner was dominate in both of her sports, but softball was her first love where she was a First Team All-State selection as an infielder. She was part of a senior class on the team roster, all of which committed to play college softball.

Madison Academy’s Carson Creehan (QB, 6-3, 195) was a two-sport athlete playing both football and baseball. He was named Region MVP and an Honorable Mention All-State selection for his play at quarterback for the Mustangs. He signed with UNA after helping an offense that scored 47 points per game. Fellow football teammate Mario Brewer (WR-DB, 5-7, 130) proved size has no limits as he signed to play football for Birmingham-Southern. He was also named the Homecoming King in his senior year and made the Principal’s Honor Roll.

Here is the listed scholarships supplied by each school:

Bob Jones- Sam Mitchell- Alabama (Baseball), Sammy Vander Hill- Motlow (Baseball), Nate Mayfield-Coastal Alabama East (Baseball), C.J. Bush-Coastal Alabama East (Baseball), Aidan Doyle—Calhoun (Baseball), Mason Freeman-Gadsden State (Baseball), Ben Arn-Southern Union (Baseball), Alaina Obianozie-Miles (Volleyball), Kaitlyn Ford-Alabama A&M (Track), Jordan Morrison-South Alabama (Track), Sydney Trusdale-UAH (Track), Taylor Thompson-Maryville College (Track), Cole Smelser-Harding University (Track), Bailey Jefferson-Wallace State (Cheer), Maddox Sunderman-Jacksonville State (Football), Gunner Dixon-Huntingdon College (Football), Dylan Stewart-Hendrix College (Football), Kaden Smith-Sterling College (Football), Christian Kemp-St. Thomas (Football), Caden Jones-Point University (Football), Kelly Fields-UNA (Football), Rayshawn Hardy-Jones C.C. (Football), Johnathan Monroe-Lane College (Football), Taeshawn Sessions-Huntingdon College (Football), Caleb Hosley-Alabama A&M (Football), Owen Tarrer-Toccoa Falls College (Soccer), Carter Sewell-Canisius College (Soccer), Hunter Johnston-Marion Military Institute (Tennis).

James Clemens- Jack Mitchell-Alabama (Golf), Gracee Prince-Calhoun (Golf), Briana Smith-LBW C.C. (Volleyball), Meleah Robinson-Calhoun (Volleyball), Andrew Lawrence-East Tennessee State (Baseball), Colten Payton-Wallace State (Baseball), Grant Gage-Wallace State (Baseball), Nate Guyse-Snead State (Baseball), Hunter Harris-Columbia State (Baseball), Emma Plummer-Auburn Montgomery (Soccer), Will Soule-Lake Erie College (Soccer), Camden Wells-Mount Saint Joseph College (Football), Gio Lopez-South Alabama (Football).

Madison Academy- Mario Brewer-Birmingham-Southern (Football), Daylen Johnson- Lindsey Wilson (Football), Carson Creehan-North Alabama (Football), Joshua Bybee-Harding (Baseball), Matt Manley-Samford (Baseball), Cody Baerlocher-Sewanee (Basketball), Abby Boyd-Motlow State (Softball).

Sparkman-  Jaylen Bibbs-Siena Heights University (Esports), Madeline Blevins-Bevil State C.C. (Softball), Anthony Boddie-Troy (Cheer), Ella Boyd-Calhoun (Softball), Casey Campbell-Calhoun (Cross Country), Justin Caudle-Davidson University (Football), Casey Davis-Faulkner University (Soccer), Nylaa Fuller- Wallace State (Basketball), Juan Gazga Figueroa-Southern Union (Soccer), Alena Godwin-Snead State (Volleyball), Jacob Haley-South Alabama (Baseball), Amirah Hayes-Southern University (Cheer), Buening Jack-Calhoun (Baseball), Cameron Jones-Asbury University (Basketball), Tayeshon King-Wingate University (Cross Country), Kennedy Langham-Samford (Basketball), Marvin Lee-Jacksonville state (Football), Erin Lindsey-Wallace State (Cheer), Briace McBeth-West Alabama (Football), Karmelo Montgomery-Alabama A&M (Football), Chelsea Moore-Alabama A&M (Soccer), Jordan Moore-UAB (Cheer), Evan Nelson-Marion Military Institute (Baseball), Tam Nguyen-Blackburn College (Volleyball), Causey Nick-Motlow State (Baseball), Kaleob Onyeahialam-East Mississippi C.C. (Football), Cassie Reasner-Kentucky (Softball), Natalie Rector-Southern Arkansas (Softball), Matthew Rozier-Tennessee-Chattanooga (Football), Destiny Sims-North Carolina A&T (Softball), Ryan Strachan-Northwest Shoals C.C. (Baseball), Christopher Walker-Roane College (Baseball), Camren Watkins-Tuskegee (Football), Carter Wells-Northeast Mississippi (Baseball).

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