Spartan signs to be a Panther
By Patrick Dillon
strathmore – There are a lot of things that draw student athletes to compete at the next level. The most obvious is the thrill of competing against fellow college athletes. Second, is the draw to the next level facilities and receiving a top education that a university can offer. Yet for Strathmore’s water polo player, Garrett Wilson there seems to be another reason all together.
“I’m really looking forward to getting away out of the valley and away from my parents,” Wilson joked.
Despite the reasoning on Wednesday, May 31, with his parents present Wilson put pen to paper. Signing a national letter of intent to attend Chapman University and play water polo for the Panthers in the fall of 2018.
“It’ll be a lot tougher competition but that’s what I’m looking forward to,” said Wilson.
There is no doubt that there will be some trials and growing pains for Wilson as he transitions from the high school game to as he transitions from the high school game to the D-III level. Not to mention the stakes will be high for Wilson as he joins a team hungry to build on their sixth place finish in the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC).
Wilson will feel right at home as he fills the position of attacker/driver for the Panthers. Driving toward the net and using his six-foot, 195 pound frame, accompanied by a 73 inch wing span was a common sight while he played for the Spartans.
Strathmore’s head coach Tim Stadtherr has seen his fair share of talent and he knows when a player has what it takes to succeed at the next level. And that something is a hard work ethic.
“I have the up most confidence in Garrett going on to the next level,” said Coach Stadtherr. “He is a lead by example type of player. You have those types of players who can be loud with their voices or loud with their actions and Garrett is the latter.”
During his junior and senior seasons competing for the Spartans Wilson scored a total of 147 goals and each of the two years 63% of Wilson’s shots found the net.
“Competing at Strathmore was amazing, I’ve kind of grown up with the guys who I had as teammates over the last four years,” said Wilson.
One of Wilson’s most cherished experiences is an improbable win his freshman year. His very first game as a Spartan back in 2013 they went up against the Porterville Panthers. Underdogs in the matchup the Spartans beat the Panthers 8-5.
The chance to continue playing water polo at the college level is something that drew Wilson to Chapman but it was also the business degree program offered by the university. Ranked as one of the top in the state Wilson will for sure be challenged but graduating high school with a 4.22 accumulative weighted GPA over the last three years shows that he is ready.
Wilson also expects to walk on to the Panthers swim team. Where he will also fit right in as he was one of the most versatile swimmers for the Spartans this season.