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Local athletes make it official

Several local athletes sign National Letters of Intent

Posted: February 5, 2014 10:47 p.m.
Updated: February 5, 2014 10:47 p.m.

During the early signing period in November, Golden Valley baseball player Jaiden France signed with Grambling State University.

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From coast to coast, Santa Clarita Valley athletes made the rounds on Wednesday during National Letter of Intent signing day.

Eight of Wednesday’s signees were football players, including three from Hart High, two from Valencia, one from Canyon, one Saugus and one transfer from College of the Canyons.

Canyon quarterback Cade Apsay, Saugus linebacker Austin Davenport and Hart wide receiver Davis Koppenhaver and Valencia defensive lineman Josh Stanton were the highlights of this year’s local signing class as all four will be playing for teams competing in the Football Bowl Subdivision, college football’s highest level.

Apsay signed this morning with Colorado, which plays in the Pac-12. He’s been committed to the school since June.

“I think there was definitely a different feeling. It’s kind of just the feeling of singing a paper and making things official,” said Apsay, who was a CalHiSports All-State player, an All-CIF selection and the Foothill League Player of the Year.

Davenport signed with New Mexico State to become the first Saugus player to sign with an FBS-level school since former Saugus quarterback Desi Rodriguez inked with Air Force in 2009.

The three-year varsity player and All-Santa Clarita Valley first-teamer verbally committed to the school in July. New Mexico State is currently competing as an independent school because the Western Athletic Conference discontinued its football participation.

“I just wanted to prove to people that you don’t need to go to a big-time school like Alemany or Oaks Christian to get a big-time scholarship,” Davenport said.

Stanton, an All-SCV second-team defender, will play for Wyoming of the Mountain West Conference next season. He first verballed to Wyoming in November.

As the last of the FBS signings, Koppenhaver is headed to Duke University to play for a football team that won the Atlantic Coast Conference Coastal Division last season.

The Hart senior CalHiSports All-State and All-CIF player originally issued a verbal commitment to Duke in September.

Koppenhaver signed alongside Hart teammates Connor Wingenroth (running back, Colgate University) and Blake Porter (lineman, Northern Arizona).

Wingenroth was The Signal’s All-Santa Clarita Valley Player of the Year this past season and he was also an All-CIF Offensive Player of the Year for the Southern Section Northern Division.

Porter joined Wingenroth on the All-CIF list.

Both Colgate and Northern Arizona participate in the Football Championship Subdivision.

Valencia wide receiver Nick Jones also signed with an FCS school, Idaho State.

Fellow Valencia Viking and kicker Cole Murphy was chosen as a preferred walk-on for Syracuse University with a potential scholarship coming later.

For College of the Canyons, sophomore free safety Wyatt Hixon made his transfer official to the University of Sioux Falls, which is an NCAA Division II team.

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