Moving On…

Before entering his final season as a Wolverine and embarking on his last chance to capture a CIF title, Renaldo Woolridge ’08 committed to continuing his basketball career at the University of Tennessee.

Woolridge, a 6’8” forward, chose fourth ranked Tennessee over Georgetown and USC.

“The town of Knoxville is great, the people are very genuine and the fan support there is amazing,” Woolridge said.

Tennessee began recruiting Woolridge intensely during the summer, and Woolridge soon found that the two meshed together perfectly.

“All the coaches and players were all really animated when they were recruiting
me, and I liked that because I’m a really animated guy, so I thought our personalities went well together,” Woolridge said. “I felt like they really wanted me, and all the fan appreciation was great and made a difference for me.”

Woolridge’s Wolverines begin their playoff run on Friday against the winner
of Westlake and El Segundo’s wildcard game today.

Cathryn Quinn ’08 committed to Princeton. Quinn got offers from Northwestern, Notre Dame, Virginia and many other Ivy League schools before she settled on Princeton.

“I was definitely looking for a good academic school that I would be able to combine with volleyball,” Quinn said.

Quinn has been a starter on girls’ varsity volleyball since she was a freshman. Quinn, the varsity co-captain and starting middle blocker, chose Princeton because it offers a competitive volleyball program that allows time to complete a rigorous academic schedule.

“The volleyball at Princeton is really a perfect fit for me because it’s not a full-time job, but it’s Division I, and they’re undefeated in the Ivy League,” Quinn said.

Though Quinn may have a more challenging schedule next year both academically and athletically, she feels confident that she will be able to manage her time. Quinn is also a member of the girls’ swim team, and thus, along with her volleyball and academic commitments, she feels she has already had practice managing her time.

“I’ve really had to manage my time well, and I’d say I’ve been pretty successful,” she said. Quinn has already gotten to know the coaches and some of the players on the Princeton volleyball team, and she said she is very excited to start playing there.

Ryan Thacher ’08 has been playing tennis for the past 10 years, and will continue his tennis career at Stanford University.

When asked about how far he sees himself continuing his tennis career, Thacher responded: “I guess at this point, as far as it goes. I’m going to play college tennis and when I first played tennis, that was certainly as far as I could picture myself playing, but now we’ll just have to see after college how far it takes me and where it goes.”

He believes that his tennis experience here helped him get ready for the team dynamic of college play.
“I think that the biggest thing high school tennis would help you transition into college tennis is by playing for a team,” Thacher said. “It’s a different environment than playing for myself when I travel to tournaments.”

Thacher looked at Stanford, Duke, Virginia, Harvard, UCLA and Princeton. However, he ultimately chose Stanford, due to its blend of academics and athletic prestige.

“I take academics very seriously and I wanted a place where I could thrive both athletically and academically,” Thacher said. “I really got along well with the coaching staff.”

Before she led the girls’ water polo team to a Mission League title and a number one ranking in CIF, Nadia Dan ’08 began her final season by committing to the University of Southern California. Dan had whittled down her choices to USC and UCLA before opting to play for the Trojans instead of their cross-town rivals, citing the amount of playing time she would be able to get at USC as a lefty Utility and also the coaching staff as her rationale.

Dan met with both coaches and players and realized the team would be a better fit for her before signing her letter of intent Nov. 14.

“We [the recruits] stayed in the dorms, and we really got to know a lot of the freshmen and upperclassmen as well,” she said. “We got to learn a lot about the team chemistry, and I felt that I fit in better with the SC girls than at UCLA.”

Since Dan will be one of only two lefties on the team next year, she feels that she will have an immediate chance to improve and contribute to the Trojans despite the fact that they play in the Pac-10 conference.

“I definitely have to get in a lot better shape to prepare myself,” she said. “I know I need to work on certain aspects of my game, but if I improve in those areas, I think the chance of me playing is there.”

Nik Turley ’08 committed to Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah for baseball.

Turley, who pitches and plays first base, has been playing baseball since he was 6 or 7 years old.

Turley also received offers from Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles and Cal State University Northridge.

Turley narrowed down his choice to BYU and LMU before selecting the former because in part, he really enjoyed the campus on his official visit there. Also, Turley “thought it was the best place for me because it’s a Mormon school and I’m Mormon.”

“He’s good on the mound, really takes control of the game and can really carry the team when he needs to,” teammate Hunter Spinks ’09 said.

Spinks recalled last year’s senior day game vs. Alemany when Turley pitched 5 1/3 innings of no-hit ball and a 450 foot plus home run Turley hit this summer as career highlights.

Turley admits he has considered forgoing college to go pro.

“If I somehow got drafted in the first 10 rounds [of the Major League Baseball draft] then I’ll think about it, but I’m pretty sure I’m going to college,” Turley said.

The left-hander Turley stands in at 6’4”, 200 lbs.