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Five Middletown High athletes commit on National Signing Day

Amanda Parrish * Delaware
aparrish@doverpost.com
Smyrna/Clayton Sun-Times

Across the country, student athletes made formal commitments to continue their athletic careers in college, and five Middletown players did the same.

A group of Middletown High athletes from the class of 2020 signed a National Letter of Intent Feb. 5 as part of National Signing Day. The day is dedicated to high school student athletes committing to play competitive sports at a college or university. 

Kaelyn Kobosko, Gabby Lano, Mitchell Jolikko, Blake Harbert and Marquee Lewis were part of the signing ceremony, according to an announcement from the Appoquinimink School District. 

The National Letter of Intent is a binding agreement between a prospective student athlete and an NLI member institution. Once signed, the athlete agrees to attend the institution full time for one academic year, two semesters or three quarters.

The NCAA established certain dates for high school athletes and their parents or guardian to sign with the colleges that have been recruiting them. 

Kaelyn Kobosko — soccer

Kobosko will play soccer at Hood College in Frederick, Maryland. She is a scholar-athlete and played on Middletown’s varsity soccer team for four years. The outside back is known as one of the best defenders in the state. Her skills and versatility were instrumental to the Cavaliers’ success in recent years, including their 2017 state championship.

Head soccer coach Rob Jamieson said she has been an invaluable member of the team and her versatility and confidence will be welcomed by her coach at Hood College.

“Her touch on the ball is second to none. Her ability to control the pace of the game is a tremendous asset,” he said. “She almost makes it look too easy at times.”

Kobosko said she chose Hood College because of the connection she made with the team and their coach.

“I chose Hood because of the welcoming atmosphere and the opportunities I will have there to challenge myself as a student and an athlete,” she said. “I look forward to continuing my education at Hood and taking my athletic career to the next level with a great soccer program.”

Kobosko was on the 2017 state championship, 2019 conference championship and 2018-19 state semi-finalist teams. She scored five goals and converted four of five penalty kicks in the 2019 season.

Gabby Lano — softball

Lano committed to play softball at Chestnut Hill College in Philadelphia. She is a scholar athlete who played on the varsity team for five years. She was a right-hand utility player often seen at third base and on the pitching mound.

Head softball coach StefanyKrygiersaid Lano is a relentless competitor and her strength as a utility player will be a great addition at Chestnut Hill College.

“She not only dominates third base, she’s a powerful pitcher and one of our top hitters,” Krygier said. “Her versatility, work ethic and positive attitude have had a definite effect on the team.”

Choosing Chestnut Hill was more than just picking the right athletic program for Lano.

“I chose Chestnut Hill College because the campus felt like home,” she said. “They have a well-known education program — the area [of study] I plan to pursue — and offer me a great opportunity to keep playing a sport I love.”

Lano was named to the All-Conference first team in 2019 and had the most single season RBIs.

Mitchell Jolikko — baseball

Jolikko will play baseball at Chesapeake College in Wye Mills, Maryland. He is a center fielder who brought power on the field at home plate with a .362 batting average between his sophomore and junior years.

Head baseball coach Mike Rausch said Jolikko will be missed when he moves on to Chesapeake College in Wye Mills, Maryland.

“Mitchell has been a key part of Middletown baseball since his arrival,” Rausch said. “His energy, enthusiasm and skill will be sorely missed. Chesapeake College is getting a great player and person in Mitchell.”

He was named to the All-Conference first team in 2019 and had crucial home runs in games against major opponents Newark High in 2018 and Caravel Academy in 2019.

Blake Harbert — baseball

Harbert committed to play baseball at Chesapeake College. He is a right-handed pitcher who played varsity for four years.

Rausche said he showed tremendous competitiveness and continues to develop his power and “baseball I.Q.”

“Blake is among our most dedicated and hardworking student athletes,” he said. “CC is getting a talented pitcher who has the potential to do great things for the team.”

Harbert said he is eager for his future at Chesapeake College.

“I’m excited to further my academic and athletic career playing baseball,” he said. “I couldn’t have done it without the support of my family.”

Harbert had a perfect game with his 2019 travel team, an 18-inning game with 27 strikeouts and a 2.0 ERA in travel ball during the 2019 season.

Marquee Lewis — football

Lewis committed to play football at Kutztown University. He is a cornerback known for being fast and sure-footed. Kutztown was ranked in the top 25 for Division II teams by the American Football Coaches Association last year. 

Head football coach Zach Blum said Lewis worked hard for this opportunity on the field and in the classroom.

“He made sure he was prepared physically and mentally for his chance,” he said. “Marquee is now reaping the rewards of his hard work. Marquee was a huge part of our defensive success. He played both the run and pass extremely well and we will miss his talents.”

Lewis said in his online coaching profile for the school, “My collegiate goal is to get an education and make my parents proud.”