As San Diego Hall of Champions Acting Executive Director Drew Moser stepped to the microphone to start the annual “Signing Party” Wednesday, Nov. 11, he surveyed the crowd and announced, “congratulations, you are all part of an attendance record. We broke the old record by 7:30 this morning.”
Since it was now 8 a.m., the previous record of almost 500 was shattered when the final estimates by John Maffei of the San Diego Union-Tribune were put at double that.
With 206 athletes from 19 sports revealing where they will be accepting college/university scholarships, it was estimated that more than $3 million in athletic scholarships were in attendance.
The total of athletes was also a record, surpassing the 175 from a year ago. This event, the only one of its kind nationally, fell on Veteran’s Day, allowing many more parents and siblings than usual to come enjoy the festivities.
San Diego is known as a hot-bed for baseball and it was proven again as 45 players signed to a wide variety of programs. The girls were equally represented as 33 signed for softball and 30 for volleyball. Even a relatively new NCAA sport, sand volleyball, allowed 13 area girls to get an opportunity at having their education paid totally or partially,
Some of the high-profile players signing included San Pasqual golfer Haley Moore (Arizona); Grossmont’s Tommy Rutherford (UC Irvine) and St. Augustine’s Eric Monroe (Yale) for boys basketball; Horizon Christian’s Dijonai Carrington (Stanford), Torrey Pines’ Sierra Campisano (Oregon), and La Jolla Country Day’s Mai-Lone Henson (Washington) in girls basketball; Poway wrestler Brandon Kier (Stanford); La Costa Canyon baseball player Mickey Moniak (UCLA) ; softball players Kellie White (Mater Dei Catholic) and Poway’s Malia Martinez (Arizona); girls track sprinter Jackie Patterson of Rancho Bernardo (Cal); Coronado tennis player Billy Rowe (Vanderbilt); El Camino girls swimmer Jordan Payne (Cal Poly SLO); Poway lacrosse standout Jake Fisk (Bryant); and girls lacrosse players Taylor Jervis (SDSU) of Poway and LCC’s Bridget Knowles (Florida).
The Hall of Champions will also host the Feb. 4 “Signing Party II” for football, boys and girls soccer and boys’ water polo as well as anyone who will be signing their National Letters of Intent in any other sport.