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Silvia gets attention, scholarship from Tabor

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Silvia gets attention, scholarship from Tabor

Sierra High alumna Emily Silvia earned a scholarship offer.

Bulletin file photo/

POSTED July 31, 2009 1:36 a.m.
Emily Silvia figured that her softball career was close to being over.

After graduating from Sierra High this past spring and helping the Timberwolves enjoy one of their all-time best seasons in which they were a win shy of capturing a share of the program’s first-ever Valley Oak League championship, Silvia’s options were to try out for one of the nearby junior colleges or concentrate on academics at a four-year university.

But before heading out into the unknown, she decided to get some innings in with the Stockton-based Runnin’ Rebels Gold under-18 team.

“I was hoping to hear something from a college coach, but I was mainly playing for the love of it,” Silvia said.

That “something” came unexpectedly during a tournament in Colorado a few weeks ago. Tabor College head coach John Bassett was impressed with what he saw, and this past Saturday Silvia signed her letter of intent.

Silvia, who will receive a partial scholarship, visited the Hillsboro, Kan. campus on July 20 and immediately fell in love.

“It really hasn’t sunk in yet,” she said. “Everything just happened so fast. It’s just been a rush. It’s nice knowing that I can still play softball, something that I love to do.”

The switch-hitting Silvia hit for a .244 average and plated a team-high 16 runs while driving in the second most with 14 out of the second-place spot in the Timberwolves’ order.

Sierra head coach Nick Olmo said Silvia was instrumental in leading the team to an 18-6-2 record and was an anchor on defense from centerfield.

“I’m not surprised that she signed, but I’m surprised it took someone this long to realize her strengths,” Olmo said. “I’m very glad to see that she’s going to the next level. She’s always been a great outfielder that can hit from either side of the plate, and she’s someone that will contribute to their program.”

Tabor is a National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics school. The Blue Jays are coming off a 6-35 overall season and went 2-14 in the Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference. But everyone on the roster returns, including four seniors, next year and will be joined by a promising cast of recent signees.

Silvia will major in either history or humanities. While the chance to continue playing softball was a big draw, she was impressed with the academic surroundings that Tabor College has to offer.

“I really like the small classes; there’s no more than 20 students in each classroom,” she said. “There about 550 seniors that graduated at Sierra High this year, and (at Tabor) there are exactly 550 students going to the school right now.”
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