On Friday morning, Arthur L. Johnson high school held a ceremony for four athletes who have recently signed to compete in their respective sports at the next level:
- Nicole Imbriaco - Field Hockey - Rutgers
- Amanda Wnorowski - Field Hockey - East Stroudsburg
- Allison Meagher - Softball - Rider
- Cyndi Wilson - Softball - St. Joe's
On hand were school administrators, coaches and family members of the athletes.
Meagher, the star pitcher for the Crusaders' softball team, said she couldn't see herself pitching anywhere but Rider next fall.
"It was the first school that I visited and from the first day I knew that I wanted to go there," said Meagher. "I liked everything about it. The area is great, the size of the school, the campus is beautiful. I loved it."
Wilson, who chose Saint Joseph's over Drexel, Temple and Villanova, could see time on the field her freshman year with the Hawks.
"They'll probably have me at first base," said Wilson. "There is a senior there this year who is graduating."
Wilson also knows that she can rely on her brother Mark, a pitcher for St. Peter's College, for help with the transition to life and competition at the next level.
"It helps us relate to one another," said Wilson. "We are really close and always have been pretty competitive. It's pretty cool that were doing the same thing now."
Imbriaco, one of the state's top scorers this fall, chose Rutgers over Cornell, Towson and Lehigh for a combination of reasons.
"The coaches were a big part of it for me," said Imbriaco. "They also offer the major that I want to pursue." Nicole plans to double major in business analytics and finance.
Both Imbracio and Amanda Wnorowski leave the Johnson field hockey program after some of the best years that the school has seen, capturing multiple conference, county and group state championships.
Wnorowski will continue her career at East Stroudsburg University, a Division-2 school.
"East Stroudsburg was the top by far," said Wnorowski. "I didn't really know if I wanted to play D-1 or D-3 field hockey. I figured it was a great medium where I could balance school and hockey."
While she played defense for the Crusaders, Wnorowski knows that her best chance at East Stroudsburg may come in the midfield, where the Warriors are a bit thin.
All four athletes stressed the importance of playing somewhat close to home to give their friends and family an opportunity to watch them compete.
"They're really excited to see me," said Meagher. "I think they're more nervous than me about it."
“Nicole, Allison, Cyndi, and Amanda have been an integral part of the success of our field hockey and softball teams, allowing us to win championships in both sports," said Gus Kalikas, supervisor of Athletics, Health, and Physical Education. "More importantly, they have been model student athletes that did things the right way both on the fields, in the classroom, and throughout our community. Although it will be sad to see them leave, the Crusaders' loss is their college’s gain, and we look forward to following their successful collegiate careers over the next four years.”
Congratulations and best of luck to all four student-athletes at the next level.