Monarch Cousins head to next level competition
Corinne and Jaykob Acosta sign to compete at Fresno Pacific and CSU Bakersfield
By Patrick Dillon @PDillon_SGN
EXETER – Cousins Corinne Acosta and Jaykob Acosta have been powerhouses for Monarch athletics in recent years, but now both are headed to compete in college after signing national letters of intent on Friday, Nov. 16.
Corinne will be heading to Fresno Pacific University (FPU) next fall to compete for the Sunbirds. Once an NAIA volleyball powerhouse, it has fallen on hard times. It’s been eight years since the Sunbirds’ last national championship. Corinne looked past the Sunbirds’ shortcomings and hopes to make an immediate impact with four of the Sunbirds’ outside hitters graduating. But for her, it was the family atmosphere which helped make her decision.
“I’d really like to be a part of that and allow that to change me into not only a better player, but a better person as well,” Corinne said.
There is a bonus for Corinne in choosing FPU. She will now be able to play against her older sister Amanda, who will be a senior at Hawaii Pacific, during Pac-West play.
“I just hope I can hit it toward her and not have her pass it,” Corinne said.
During Corinne’s three years with the Monarchs, she has 1,131 kills. Her highest season total came this season with 557 kills. Additionally, for her high school career, she had 229 aces and 84 blocks. Corinne was a huge part of the Monarchs’ winning back-to-back Division II titles. Exeter head coach Samantha Hilvers knows she is in good hands at FPU.
“She found a program and a coach in Tracy with whom she can thrive and grow under for the next four years,” Hilvers said.
Jaykob still has one more season to compete for the Monarchs, but decided to make his decision early. He signed to play baseball for the CSU Bakersfield Roadrunners. The decision makes him the first Division I signee from Exeter this year.
“This is something I’ve been working on for a long time and to finally make it official feels great,” Jaykob said.
The Roadrunners have not made an appearance in the NCAA tournament for three years. Something Jaykob hopes to help remedy right away when he laces up his cleats in the spring. The college team’s plan is to have him play in relief situations, or at shortstop.
“Wherever they have me, I’ll be happy to play,” Jaykob said.
Jaykob was a big piece of the Monarchs’ advancement to last year’s Division IV Valley Championship game. On the mound, he won five games, has a 1.14 earned run average with 81 strike outs. On the field nothing got past him at short stop as he has a .904 fielding percentage. He had his power on offense as well with a 3.19 batting average with 30 runs and 13 runs batted in.
“To my knowledge he is the first Exeter baseball player to go straight to Division I on a scholarship,” Exeter head coach Kevin Kirkman said.