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HAHIRA –– The Valwood Valiants had a huge day on National Signing day by having four athletes sign their name on the dotted line for the next level.
Wednesday’s signees came from different sports, from football to volleyball to baseball as Harrison Hamsley, Pate Hogan, Mac McRae and Kennedy Kimbro signed letters of intent with colleges.
Starting with football, Hamsley and Hogan played two years together with the Valiants, but they will be taking their talents to different schools for their new journeys.
Hamsley signed with Georgia Southern after an amazing career at Valwood –– earning back-to-back All-Region honors on both sides of the ball and winning GISA Region 3-3A Co-Player of the Year in 2020.
Valwood head coach Justin Henderson understands what kind of player Georgia Southern is getting when Hamsley arrives in Statesboro.
Hamsely admits he feels relieved after a stressful recruiting process, but he knows he made the right choice.
“The recruiting process was strange, and I had a lot of options for school.” Hamsley said. “I know I made the right choice of choosing Southern.”
Hogan, the Valiants quarterback for the last two years, led the Valiants to a region championship and state runner-up in his junior year.
The 5-foot-11, 180-pound quarterback signed with the University of West Georgia on Wednesday.
Hogan had a strong two-year campaign at Valwood under Henderson, throwing for 3,000 yards and 24 touchdowns.
Hogan felt great knowing he picked the West Georgia after seeing the beautiful campus in Carrollton.
“It’s going to be nice knowing I get to play for the peach basket after watching Valdosta and West Georgia compete for it for years.” Hogan said. “Plus, I’m close to home and that’s always great having family around.”
Moving from the football field to the volleyball court, Kennedy Kimbro signed her letter of intent to attend Columbia College.
Kimbro played the center position for the Valiants all four years.
In those four years, she posted 2,273 assists, 267 aces, 647 digs and 235 kills. Known as KK at the school, Kimbro was four-time All-Region selection, three-time all-state and team captain for three years. KK ended her dominant run the most fitting way –– winning the State Championship her senior year.
Kimbro was excited about the opportunity to play for Columbia, especially with everything that comes with it.
“After visiting the school and working out with the team I knew I wanted to be here.” Kimbro said. “I’m very excited and is looking forward to being close to family and loves the area and school.”
From the volleyball court to the diamond, Valiants star Mac McRae also signed with the University of West Georgia.
McRae had a great run with Valwood and is not finished yet depending on the upcoming season. The past three years he has been able to step on the diamond, he has been amazing.
McRae started as a freshman and was dominant as he was an All-Region performer his first year. As a sophomore, he made All-Region and All-State as a pitcher. McRae’s junior year was cut short due to COVID-19, but he has already established himself as a college prospect.
During the ceremony, Henderson gave a rousing speech to the athletes, emphasizing to them that playing at Valwood can send them to the next level in athletics.
“The myth that you can not go to college for athletics at Valwood School is once again debunked,” Henderson said. “Today, we have an FBS football player signing to play football, a player signing to play Division II football at an elite school. It is the toughest conference in D-II. We also have a Division II baseball player signing and a volleyball player signing. We have a volleyball player at Georgia Tech and this year, we have two golfers that have signed to play Division I golf. If you are interested in academics, we have a 90% acceptance rate to the University of Georgia, which is better than any in the country.”