For most Golden Valley High School students, Wednesday, Feb. 6 was just another school day in the Santa Clarita Valley. But for softball player Sophia Medellin and track & field and cross-country athletes Shyann Franklin, Brooke Milam and Daniel Rush, the day had much more meaning.
Signing their National Letters of Intent (NLI), Medellin and Franklin will head off to continue their respective careers at the University of California, Berkeley, while Milam and Rush will stay local, signing with The Master’s University.
“It was a great feeling and felt very vibrant knowing that myself and a few other classmates of mine are going to go further in sports and pursue a college degree,” Medellin said. “GV isn’t really known for having the best players in the valley, but it’s just nice knowing that we could scramble up a couple athletes and get to where we deserve to be.”
Medellin was part of Golden Valley’s most historic softball team that won a program-best 18 games in 2017 and finished her junior year as the Foothill League’s top hitter finishing with a batting average of .536 on 30 hits, 38 RBIs and eight home runs in 56 at-bats.
Franklin will join Medellin at Berkeley, but will join the track & field team and compete in the discus and shot put.
A dual-sport athlete, who led the Grizzlies girls basketball team averaging a double-double with 14.5 points and 10.8 rebounds per game this season, she broke the Foothill League shot put record at CIF state prelims with a throw of 46-05. Franklin placed second in the shot put in the finals the very next day in her first appearance at the state meet.
Rush will continue his running career with the Mustangs after ending his high school cross-country career with a third-place finish at Foothill League finals. Following it up with an 11th-place finish at CIF-Southern Section finals to qualify for the state meet as the lone Golden Valley representative.
“It feels really good. I’m just really excited to take that next step and have that decision off my shoulders,” Rush said. “It was really exciting seeing all of us compete over the past four years and the fact that we are all going off to college and taking that next step, it’s just really exciting and encouraging.”
Milam joins Rush at The Master’s University after having a productive cross-country season in 2018, setting new personal records in the 3-mile race at Cool Breeze Invitational (19 minutes-42 seconds) and in the 5-mile race at The Master’s University XC Invitational (21:09.06).
“Throughout high school I have really come to love running more than I ever thought I would, so for the longest time I thought that I would never run in college, but I just fell in love with it,” Milam said. “The idea that I get to continue in the sport is just so exciting for me.”
Both runners will compete in the track & field season and cannot wait to show what they have for one last go around.
“I started doing the 2-mile for the first time last season and I really really enjoyed it. I’m just trying to break that 12-minute threshold, I got really close last year,” Milam said. “I’ve always loved the 16 so I’m just going to go after it and try to get some PRs in that too.”
“This track season, I would love to return to the state meet and get a school record or two, especially in the 32. I want to see how low I can get my time on that and just do what I can and go out with a bang,” Rush said.