Dos Pueblos hosts signing ceremony for scholarship student-athletes

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Dos Pueblos hosted a ceremony on Wednesday to recognize its large crop of student-athletes who have committed to play collegiate athletics next year.

The football team is sending four players to college while three athletes from the aquatics program received scholarships to compete for Division 1 NCAA programs.

Baseball, girls soccer and boys cross country produced two NCAA athletes each. Softball, wrestling and girls volleyball were also represented.

Each of the student-athletes sat with their new schools’ shirts on and were introduced by their high school coaches. Friends and family watched from the stands in Sovine Gym.

JAMIE BENEDETTO, UC SAN DIEGO SOCCER: Benedetto was a three-year varsity captain and a two-time All-Channel League First-Team member. Dos Pueblos soccer coach Pato Guerrero loved that he could play her anywhere on the field and thought of her as a player-coach because of her leadership skills.

NICO BORNAND, UNLV FOOTBALL: Bornand was an All-CIF player for the Chargers and Channel League Defensive MVP. Bornand excelled at three positions, playing tight end, linebacker and place kicker.

MARINA BOULANGER, FLORIDA INTERNATIONAL UNIVERSITY: Marina is the first Dos Pueblos athlete to ever be awarded a scholarship for Sand Volleyball. She signed with Florida International University in Miami, Florida. Boulanger played for the indoor girls volleyball team but her passion is on the beach.

CASSANDRA DAVIS, CLAREMONT-MCKENNA MUDD-SCRIPPS SOFTBALL: Davis has signed to play with the Athenas while pursuing an engineering degree.

MAX DAVIS, UCLA CROSS COUNTRY: Davis reached the CIF State Meet and placed 12th overall in Division 2. He and Fernandez combined to lead the Chargers team, which was CIF Southern Section champion, to a fourth overall finish in the State.

JORDAN DEFGRAFFINREID, COLORADO SCHOOL OF MINES FOOTBALL: Degraffinreid has a GPA over 3.6 that will serve him well at this top-flight engineering school located in Golden, just outside of Denver. The Orediggers are coming off a 6-5 season and liked his athleticism and versatility shown at DP as a kick returner, receiver and defensive back.

DRAKE GILLILAND, LEWIS & CLARK BASEBALL – Gilliland will join the Pioneers in Portland, Oregon. Drake has plenty of power potential as a strong 6’3″ 220-pounder who can pitch and play the corner infield positions.

BRYAN FERNANDEZ, OREGON CROSS COUNTRY: The Oregon-bound Fernandez is the only Dos Pueblos runner to ever win a State Championship, doing so in the fall season in cross country. Fernandez had an incredible senior season, going undefeated and being named the Gatorade High School Cross Country Runner of the Year.

CHAD LAMPE, LINDSEY WILSON COLLEGE: Lampe was a three-time Channel League champion with the Chargers and competed deep into CIF each of the past three years, including a trip to the State Tournament as a junior. “He’s done it all and he’s going to take his skill to the next level. I’m very excited about that,” credited Chargers head coach Anthony Califano.

CHLOE MADILL, DARTMOUTH SOFTBALL: Madill will leave Dos Pueblos with a both CIF Championship in softball and an All-CIF Academic State Championship. She carries a 4.8 GPA and handles a bat and glove just as well.

JANELLE NGUYEN, UNLV SWIMMING: Janelle is a SoCal Junior Olympic champion in the butterfly and is the reigning Channel League champion in the 100 fly and 500 freestyle. Nguyen advanced to the CIF Finals last year in the 500 free. Chargers swimming coach Kevin Kuga highlighted her work ethic and fun personality.

JASON SCHWARTZ, AZUSA PACIFIC FOOTBALL – Schwartz was one of two players on the Chargers football team to earn All-CIF First Team honors. The defensive lineman was a team captain and recorded 52 tackles – 12 for losses – eight sacks and six pass breakups on the season.

RACHEL SMITH, USC SOCCER: Smith verbally committed to the Trojans during her junior year, and she seemed destined to play in college since the time she was a freshman. Smith totaled 67 goals in her prep career, which included two All-CIF selections. “One of the most complete players I’ve ever coached,” said Chargers coach Pato Guerrero.

GABE SPEIER, UCSB BASEBALL: Gabe verbally committed to the Gauchos before his junior season. The hard-throwing left-handed pitcher will continue his career at UCSB with head coach Andrew Checketts. His fastball has been clocked at 93 MPH this spring and he can mix in effective off-speed pitches.

ANTHONY SPIRITOSANTO, UNIVERSITY OF SAN DIEGO FOOTBALL: Anthony will play for the Toreros, who open up their 2013 schedule at Cal Poly. Spiritosanto was the Channel League’s leading rusher in the fall and the league’s offensive MVP. He gained 936 yards and scored 10 touchdowns for the season.

LESTER WRIGHT, UCSB SWIMMING & DIVING: Dos Pueblos swimming coach Chris Parrish introduced Wright at today’s ceremony and talked about how incredible a performer Wright has been. In not even two years at Dos Pueblos, the All-CIF diver has impressed the entire aquatics program because Dos Pueblos has never witnessed that kind of diving ability.