• 82°

Saints sign scholarship offers from WM and BC

Last Thursday afternoon in Nansemond-Suffolk Academy’s library, two seniors had a good reason for using the library for a reason other than studying.

Katie Murphy and Matt Hamlet signed letters of intent to accept athletic scholarships to Division I schools.

Murphy will be playing golf at William and Mary beginning next fall and Hamlet accepted a baseball scholarship from Boston College.

With family, coaches, and a few fellow NSA students also taking a few minutes out from class, NSA headmaster Jason Coulombe briefly summed up everyone’s feelings just before Murphy and Hamlet made the paperwork official.

“This day represents a lot of hard work, and certainly many hours of work and sacrifice on the part of your families, too.”

“These are two prestigious institutions,” said Coulombe about W&M and BC, “we know your families and friends are very happy for you, and we at NSA are also very proud and happy for you.”

Whether it included continuing her golf career or not, Murphy has had her mind set on William and Mary for a long time.

“I took a campus tour as a freshman and fell in love with the school.

I visited other schools which were nice, but not the same.”

It wasn’t until this past spring, that the women’s golf team, and an athletic scholarship at W&M was something to think about.

“I know I’m going to study law and it’s a great place to go for that.

My focus was always on academics, but if I got a chance to play golf, then great, even better,” said Murphy.

Another major bonus to being on W&M’s golf team, the home course just happens to be Kingsmill; not a bad place to go to practice and break away from the books for a few hours a day.

“This is just as much their moment as mine,” said Murphy about her family being on hand for Thursday’s signing.

“It was great seeing the expressions on their faces and seeing what it meant to them…that was the biggest thing today.”

Going to school just up the road in Williamsburg is another big plus according to Murphy.

“It’s close enough for me to come home, or have friends and family be able to come up and visit or see me play.

I mean I can’t leave all this!” she said, talking about her friends and family with her for Thursday’s occasion.

Hamlet’s route to Boston College hasn’t been quite as direct, but he’s just as excited about the opportunity he’s earned.

He was being recruited by a few other schools, one of which was Virginia Military, when a VMI assistant coach took an assistant job at BC after this past spring.

That coach, Joe Hastings, kept Hamlet’s name with him when he went north and Hamlet made an unofficial visit to BC, then an official visit in August.

“I loved the city and loved the school,” said Hamlet about his first visit.

Then in August, “the first day there they took me around the campus and the baseball facilities.

Then we went back to the coaches’ office and they made an offer to me.

“We came home and my parents and I talked about it for a few days, then I called coach back and told him.”

Hamlet, who is a pitcher and shortstop for the Saints, said the chance to play for an ACC school and that BC is building a new $12 million baseball stadium, both add to the anticipation.

“It’s a relief knowing it’s over and I’m officially going to Boston College,” said Hamlet.

Between now and beginning their collegiate classes and careers, both Murphy and Hamlet still have plenty to do at NSA.

Murphy has one more golf season and Hamlet, who just finished an All-TCIS level volleyball season, has basketball, then of course, baseball, to go.