By Kyle LoJacono
Three Wiregrass Ranch seniors signed their letters of intent on March 10 to play in college.
Nick Stutt makes Bulls history
Nick Stutt became the first Wiregrass Ranch golfer, boys or girls, to sign with a college when he picked Piedmont College, a Division III school in Georgia.
“It feels really good to be the first,” Stutt said. He then added, “Piedmont has good academics. I’m undecided on my major right now, but it’s a good fit for me.”
Stutt started golfing around age 8 because his father also plays the game.
During his time on the squad, the Bulls won two Sunshine Athletic Conference championships and a district title in his senior year, the first for the program.
“It meant a lot to go out with a win in districts,” Stutt said.
Stutt averaged a score of 38.3 in his senior season.
Sierra Monday signs with Barons
Sierra Monday became the second Wiregrass Ranch girls soccer player to sign within 10 days, following teammate Nicole Esposito. Monday, a midfielder, is the second Bulls soccer player, boys or girls, to sign with a college.
Monday, who attended Land O’ Lakes High her first two years, will play at Brewton-Parker College, an NAIA school in Georgia. She plans on studying physical therapy while majoring in biology.
“It was a sigh of relief to sign,” said Monday, who started playing at age 5. “There were so many hours of practice, sweat and pain. All the traveling my parents did to let me play and get better. It’s just great.”
The Bulls had a 23-3-2 record this year, the first 20-win season for the program. They also won their first district championship and made it to the Class 4A regional finals.
“I couldn’t ask for a better senior year,” Monday said. “To have such a great coach (Erin Dodd) and have such a great record and to go into college with confidence is great.”
Monday scored seven goals and added five assists this season and earned a spot on the All-Laker/All-Lutz News girls soccer first team. She had nine goals and seven assists while playing at Wiregrass Ranch.
Gant gets shot in Division I
When John Michael Gant started playing baseball as a shortstop at age 7 he wanted to play baseball at the highest level.
He grew to a height of 6-foot-4, forcing him from the infield to the pitching mound, but his dreams still remain. He took a step toward that goal when he signed with Long Island University, Brooklyn Campus, a Division I program.
“I’m ready to go,” Gant said. “It’s what I’ve always dreamed of since I was a little kid and the majors after that, hopefully.”
Gant, who uses a fastball, curveball and changeup, will study athletic training and sports medicine. He said one of the reasons he picked Long Island was a chance to play early.
“I really wanted to play Division I baseball, and they told me I’d have the opportunity to start as a freshman,” Gant said.
Gant has a 3-0 record this season with a 1.40 ERA in 20 innings pitched. He has struck out 39 batters while walking only seven.
Gant said his favorite moment while at Wiregrass Ranch was pitching a no hitter against Lecanto in his first start this season on Feb. 15, his only no-no while in high school. He needed only 100 pitches to complete the game, striking out 14 of the 23 batters he faced.
-All stats as recorded to Maxpreps.com by coaches.