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Student athletes reflect on College careers

| Friday, March 24, 2017

Four Saint Mary’s senior athletes spoke Thursday about their experiences with sports and their growth at Saint Mary’s, as part of the “Why We Play” series.

Ali Mahoney, a golfer for all four years she has been at Saint Mary’s, said she started playing golf when she was four years old, but never planned on playing in college.

Still, Mahoney had always wanted to come to Saint Mary’s, she said, and the Division III team seemed like a good fit.

“I knew I wanted to be part of this tradition,” she said. “Division III would allow me to play and allow me to have all the other experiences I wanted.”

Mahoney said she could not imagine not being a student athlete.

“There is nothing I love more than being able to wear a french cross on my hat,” Mahoney said. “I was able to continue playing a sport I love at an institution I love.”

Aspen Davis has played basketball all four years — despite a series of injuries that frequently kept her from the court. She said her fondest memory is the first game this past season, when she finally made it past her injuries.

“It was the first time since my senior year of high school I felt like I was where I was supposed to be,” Davis said. “[It] felt almost as natural as breathing. … Basketball has made me a better person and has given me a countless number of things I am forever going to be grateful for.”

Caitlyn Migawa said softball has always been a part of her.

“I played because it was my first love,” she said.

After four years on the Saint Mary’s team, Migawa is now also a full-time student teacher.

“How can I have practically a full-time job while playing a sport? The answer is simple: I love it,” Migawa said. “For the two hours I have that ball in my hand I feel no worries. I feel no stress, I am not tired. I don’t think of any students, or any work or anything else. Deep down I play for one reason — I play because it is who I am.”

Lacrosse player Shannen Weyer said she already knew she wanted to come to school at Saint Mary’s, and the new lacrosse team sealed the deal for her.

“Playing lacrosse here has given me so many opportunities and has entirely changed my college career,” she said.

As she finishes out her final season, Weyer said her team is the main reason she has loved the sport so much during her time at Saint Mary’s.

“I made friends that I will have forever,” she said. “This team has come so far since my very first year, and I feel unbelievably honored to have been part it for the past four years.”

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