For Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé senior Mariah Schauwecker, a childhood dream is about to become a reality.
Family, friends and coaches gathered in the JDHS gymnasium on Wednesday to watch as Schauwecker signed a letter of intent to play softball with the College of Southern Idaho. Schauwecker said it felt like a culmination of years of practice and hard work.
“Everything I’ve been working towards has led me to playing college softball,” Schauwecker said. “It’s been one of my biggest dreams since I was a little girl.”
Schauwecker’s parents John and Darcy said that they’re especially excited for her daughter, not just for fulfilling her dream of playing college softball but also because Southern Idaho was her first choice.
“She got to go down and play with the team and called me afterwards and said, ‘Mom, this is what I want to do,’” Darcy Schauwecker said. “She’s got family that’s a little less than two hours from where she’ll be in Idaho and a sister that’s in Park City just a few hours from her, so she’s excited. She worked hard for this and I think she deserves it. We’re really proud of her.”
John Schauwecker said that while Idaho is a long ways away from Alaska, he knows she’s in good hands with a “good school and well-funded program for softball.”
Schauwecker’s stats for the season speak for themselves with a strong .375 batting average, robust .500 on base percentage and a stingy 2.47 ERA, proving she gives an excellent performance at bat or on the mound.
JDHS softball coach Lexie Razor said it can be challenging to be recruited out of state, especially from out of Alaska, which makes the accomplishment that much more significant. Razor added that she’s confident that Schauwecker found a good fit for her.
“I would tell her to just stay herself,” Razor said. “To keep hustling, working hard and keep up her sense of humor because she’s a joy on the team but she’s also a real leader and works really hard. Mariah, you’re awesome and keep up the hard work.”
With school starting Aug. 21, Schauwecker said she’s likely a week or two early and will be prepared for the season starting in the spring. The reason Southern Idaho felt like a good fit for her was largely due to the energy of the team she experienced when practicing with them last November. Schauwecker added that the size of the school was exactly what she was looking for.
“It just feels like it was such a long journey and it was so stressful but it was all worth it and I’m so excited,” Schauwecker said. “I’m nervous, but I think it’s just going to be an experience and I’m excited to see where the college of Southern Idaho takes me. I want to thank my parents especially and all of my coaches just for leading me along the way and I want to say Go Bears.”
• Contact reporter Jonson Kuhn at firstname.lastname@example.org.