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Once a Tiger, always a Tiger: Where are they now?

Jan. 4, 2018 – As the winter sports season continues and the spring season looms ahead, former athletes look back on their time playing as a Tiger.

After enrolling at Tabor College in Hillsboro, Kansas. Noah Birkeness began playing golf this fall. He said he

Noah Birkeness
Photo by Gannon Boone

enjoys the university level classwork more than high school work.

He said he describes golf is enjoyable and said every event feels like a high school state event.

“I love the atmosphere it creates,” he said.

Abbigayle Danner began playing volleyball at Central Methodist University in Fayette this fall. She said college proves to be going well. She said she makes good grades in ways she describes as a challenging environment.

“College classes are definitely different from high school classes but I have adjusted well,” she said.

Abbigayle Danner
Photo by Gannon Boone

Playing volleyball at the collegiate level gave her an opportunity to keep playing a sport she said means so much to her. She said she can see a difference in the way she plays. She became more aggressive and have grown a lot as a player during this season, she said.

Josie Rimmer began attending Washburn University in Topeka, Kansas this fall where she played soccer. She said she describes soccer on the collegiate level as everything she expected and more.

Almost every other weekend Rimmer and her teammates played away games, which allowed her to go a lot of places she never visited like Oklahoma and Nebraska, she said.

However, the busy fall season proved to be so busy, school became stressful. Rimmer said she did much of her homework on the bus traveling to and from games. She

said she describes every day as a routine of class, practice, study and sleep.

Landon Seely
Photo by Gannon Boone

Landon Seely enrolled in Benedictine College in Atchison, Kansas. He said college proves to be a little tough. He said he does enjoy the free time in between classes. Leaning toward dentistry as a career, he currently studies biology.

He joined the Raven football team as a redshirt. He said he guards a National Football League prospect when the team scouters come to practice watching the prospect play.

Peyton Soria plays baseball for State Fair Community College in Sedalia. He said baseball practice goes well.

Peyton Soria
Photo by Bryce Mereness

Doing one sport all year round, he said allows him to focus on developing better skills for that particular sport. While he doesn’t yet know his major, he said he currently works on core courses and will declare a major later on.

Shawn Vogler signed on to play golf for William Jewell College in Liberty. He said he describes college as a different experience than high school. He said he encountered a steeper learning curve than high school.

“(There is) a lot more competition trying to fight for those top five spots,”

he said.

WHAT THEY MISS

Danner said she misses her family and friends and the good home cooked meals. She said she also misses the traditions of Excelsior Springs like watching the homecoming parade and getting Dari B Drive-In on Halloween.

Josie Rimmer
Photo by Gannon Boone

Rimmer said she misses the small town feel of Excelsior because it feels like home. Birkeness said he misses the feel of that town, from the high school parking lot to the golf course. He misses the nostalgia of Excelsior, which has a story for so many places and people. Soria misses the Excelsior community as he lived in Excelsior his own life.

Vogler said he misses his golf teammates. They grew close relationships their last year playing together.

Shawn Vogler
Photo by Gannon Boone

Seely said the 2018 Tiger Football Team’s season made him proud. He said he misses being the guy others looks toward when they need leadership.

“I just miss being that kind of guy that the team looks toward,” he said.

Danner said she didn’t realize she was going to miss was the relationships she developed with my teachers She misses her teachers and coaches, she said, because of their impact on her life.

“Nothing beats, strapping my laces and playing with my team for that town,” she said. “I will forever miss being a Tiger athlete.”

By Kimberely Blackburn • kimberely@leaderpress.com

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