Longview High School celebrated the advancing careers of two of its college-bound athletes during Wednesday afternoon’s signing day ceremony at the on-campus Turf Room.
A pair of Lady Lobo sports were represented when soccer’s Karen Juarez and volleyball’s Makenna Montgomery made an appearance at their respective event booths.
“To get to this part of the year and still have people from Longview High School, that’s big,” Longview assistant athletic director and event speaker Johnny Hamilton said of his school's signings on Wednesday. “You think about athletes all the time, but it takes more than that. You gotta do what’s right in the classroom, and both of y’all did that.”
Juarez was one of those student-athletes, and also excelled as a member of Longview’s soccer program during her high school years. That was evident because she was recognized as a 15-5A first-team all-district player as a junior and senior.
She is setting herself up for more success at the next level, and couldn’t wait to sign the dotted line of her national letter of intent to continue her career at the Colorado-based Adams State University.
“I’m excited because it’ll be out of state, so it’s something new,” Juarez said of her future college career. “And I’ve always loved Colorado since my dad has family 30 minutes away from the school.”
“I went on my unofficial visit and I got to see the coaching staff,” she continued. “I really love how they coach. The teammates, they’re all really nice. And [the school has] a really good kinesiology program, which is what I want to get into. I just knew this was going to be the fit for me.”
The other person was a valuable volleyball contributor in Montgomery. She had to excel in an extra step before she could reach the collegiate stage of her playing career at the Metroplex-based Richland College.
“When I first started playing volleyball, I never thought that I would get the chance to play in college,” said Montgomery. “It started out as a hobby for me and I ended up falling in love with it, so I committed to it exponentially.”
“When I went to Richland for the tryout, I had an amazing time with the coach and all the other girls,” she added. “It filled me with joy, knowing it’s a possibility that I can make it. Once I was told that [the coach] wanted me on the team, I knew that it was going to be my home.”
Adams State University is located in Alamosa, Colorado, and competes with Black Hills State University, Chadron State College, Colorado Christian University, University of Colorado-Colorado Springs, Colorado Mesa University, Colorado School of Mines, Colorado State University-Pueblo, Fort Lewis College, Metropolitan State University of Denver, New Mexico Highlands University, Regis University, South Dakota School of Mines and Technology, Western Colorado University, and Westminster College as a member of NCAA Division II’s Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference.
Richland College calls Dallas home, and is a NJCAA member of the Metro Athletic Conference like Brookhaven, Cedar Valley, Eastfield, Mountain View and North Lake.