Student athletes plan to continue their sport after college

Ameliese Baehr-Ross

There are 682 student athletes at Augustana College. For student athletes, their team and sport is a big part of not only their college life, but also their social life. Many students want to continue their sport after college, and there are many opportunities to do so, such as playing professionally, coaching and men/women’s leagues. 
Matthew Pierson, a junior on the men’s lacrosse team, wants to continue his athletic career after college. He said lacrosse has had a huge impact on who he is today and has impacted all the major decisions he has made in his life. He plans to play in a men’s league in the future to keep playing with experienced athletes, and even hopes to be able to coach younger kids in the future. 
“Lacrosse has had a huge impact on my entire life, it even impacted where I decided to go to college. I have met my closest friends through lacrosse, and I want to continue playing even if it is not at the professional level,” Pierson said.
 Some student athletes feel more comfortable and prepared going to college and being on their own because they feel that there are so many life skills taught through athletics. 
Kennedy Sawyer, a sophomore on the bowling team, wants to continue her bowling career after college and hopes to play in a women’s league in the future. She also believes that the coaching and skills that she has learned from bowling will carry over into her future. 
“It is not a super physically intense sport, but it is more of a mental game. Bowling has really taught me to not overthink things and to process problems and solutions for what they are,” Sawyer said. 
Niko Ragano, a sophomore on the soccer team, is also planning to continue his soccer career after he graduates Augustana College. He plans to play soccer for fun, and maybe even in a league if that opportunity presents itself. He plans to play until his body can no longer handle it physically. 
“Being a part of a team is a great way to stay connected after college. It has helped me find a group of people who love the sport as much as I do and has helped me make connections with them,” Ragano said.