Two Paonia High School senior student-athletes committed to playing sports at a Division I schools during Nov. 14 signing ceremonies.
Mckenna Palmer signed to play volleyball at the University of Northern Colorado in Greeley.
Palmer is the daughter of Randal and Melissa Palmer. A 6-foot outside hitter, Palmer completed 275 kills her senior year and had the fifth highest hitting percentage in Class 2A.
Attending her signing were her parents, head coach Karla Head, former head coach Krista Carsten, JV coach Kriss Allen and middle school coach Tonya Pipher. Palmer gave credit to them all. "I've had so many people supporting me throughout the years," said Palmer. She also thanked middle school coach Johnna Martin, who was unable to attend the signing.
She also wanted basketball coaches Scott Rienks and John Blair at the signing. They have been very supportive and attended every volleyball game they could make.
Palmer plans to study political science and attend law school after graduation. She chose UNC after touring the campus with older brother Keegan a few years ago. She liked that it began as a teachers' college and for its strong academic programs. "The sport was a great plus," said Palmer. "I want to play the sport I love for four more years."
Kaden "KJ" Seriani signed to play baseball for Grand Canyon University in Phoenix, Ariz. The son of Jon and Stacey Seriani, he plans to study business economics. Jon Seriani also represented the coaching staff at the signing. Head coach Nate Miller, whom Seriani said "had a big impact on my high school career," was unable to attend.
Seriani has spent a lot of time in Arizona and has family there. "I love Arizona," said Seriani. "It's hot, it's dry all year, and you get to play baseball 24/7. The best of the best go to Arizona."
Known for his 90- to 94-mph fast ball, Seriani is among the best prep baseball players in Colorado. An all-conference and all-state player, the last two seasons he recorded an ERA of .70, and struck out 207 batters in 110 innings. As a junior outfielder and starting pitcher he helped lead the Eagles to a 25-0 record and the state 2A title. He was named Class 2A Player of the Year and to the Denver Post All-Colorado baseball team.
"We think he will be not only a great college pitcher, but an exciting professional prospect," wrote GCU assistant coach Greg Wallis in announcing Seriani's commitment to GCU.
"It will definitely be a test of my abilities," said Seriani. "It's going to be fun."