Lakota West Firebirds

    Thirteen Lakota West Firebirds Sign in Fall Signing Ceremony

    Photos by Lou Spinazzola

    West Chester, OH (November 10, 2021)

    Lakota West Athletic Department hosted an athletic signing event on Wednesday afternoon in the Lakota West Community Room on the first day of the NCAA Fall Signing Period. Lakota West Principal Ben Brown and Athletic Director Scott Kaufman both gave their congratulations and gratitude to the seniors and their families prior to the 13 Firebirds signing their commitment letters to continue their academic and athletic careers at their respective schools.

    Link to signing photos by Headlines Sportswear-

    Link to Cincinnati Enquirer Signings Story:

    Link to Greater Miami Conference Signings:


     Ashton Kamdem-Soccer– University of Akron

    Ashton currently plays left back for FC Cincinnati Academy U19 team.  In his time with FCC, he has attended the US National team ID center and has played a game vs the pros in a U-23 match. In addition to soccer, he enjoys playing chess in his free time.


    Paul Walters-Soccer-Northwestern University

    Paul is a goal keeper for the FC Cincinnati Academy U19 team. As a sophomore, he played for Lakota West and was named 1st Team All-GMC and was named Top Defensive Player for the Firebird squad. “Paul, in short, is a leader. He leads by example. The best way to describe him is that he comes out to improve every day.  He isn’t in it for the accolades or to get noticed. When Paul comes to training, he is showing up to work so he, and more importantly his teammates, can get a little bit better each day. When you have athletes that are in it so their teammates can get better, you have someone people will rally around. Paul is that type of leader,” said FC Cincinnati Academy Director of Goalkeeping Dave Schureck.


    Ashley Fryer-Swimming– Bowling Green State University

    Ashley is a mid-distance freestyle specialist. In 2020 and 2021, she qualified for the OHSAA State Championship in 4 different events (200 free, 500 free, 200 and 400 free relays). As an individual in 2021, she finished 17th in the state in 200 free and 20th place in the 500 free. Fryer was the leadoff swimmer on the 7th place 200 free relay team that met the HS All-American standard and broke the Lakota West and Lakota District records. Fryer also swims for the Mason Manta Ray Swim Club. “Ashley is an extremely hard worker who communicates her goals and works toward achieving those goals.  Ashley demonstrates team spirit and we are relying on her to provide senior leadership this season,” said Lakota West Head Coach Dennis Beck


    Paige Striley-Swimming– University of Missouri

    Paige graduates from Lakota West as the most elite swimmer in the school’s history. She owns five individual Lakota West and Lakota District school records (200IM, 50 free, 100 fly, 100 free, 100 breast). She’s also a swimmer in all three school relay records. In 2021, Striley was a two time conference champion and named GMC Swimmer of the Year. At 2021 OHSAA State Swim Championships she finished 3rd in 100 breast and 5th in 100 fly. Striley also qualified in the 100 free and 200 IM of her sophomore season. Paige also swims for the Mason Manta Ray Swim Club. “Paige is always ready for the next challenge and accepts that challenge as she works toward her goals.  Paige also demonstrates team spirit and we are relying on her to provide senior leadership this season,” said Lakota West Head Coach Dennis Beck.


    Kendall Forren-Softball– Miami University

    Forren hit .500 in 76 at bats as the starting catcher for the 2021 Firebird squad that made its way to the OHSAA Final Four. She was named 1st team All-GMC while holding a .549 OBP and hitting three homeruns for the season.  “Kendall has worked extremely hard to become one of the top catchers in our area and she wants to keep getting better on a daily basis,” said Lakota West Head Coach Keith Castner.


    Molly Grace–Softball–University of Dayton

    Molly is a 2-sport stand-out at Lakota West. This past fall, she advanced to the OHSAA Tennis State Championships on a doubles team with Leah Schleibaum. Grace also advanced to the OHSAA State Finals in softball last spring. The starting shortstop hit .610 for the 2021 season including three homeruns, two triples and 19 doubles. She broke school records in hits and doubles in a season. She was named first team All-GMC and 2nd team All-State as she led the GMC in hits for the season (61). “Molly has developed into one of our top players in our league at the plate and in the field.  We are looking for a great success her senior year,” said Lakota West Head Coach Keith Castner


    Belle Hummel-Softball-Ohio University

    The speedy center fielder set school records last season with 58 runs scored and 38 stolen bases. With another year remaining, she already owns the school career record in stolen bases (62) and currently sits 5th all time in runs (92). She led the GMC in hitting with a .611 BA and a .641 OBP. She was named both 1st team All-GMC and 1st team All-state in 2021. She was also named 1st team All-GMC her freshman year, but was denied the honor her sophomore year when the season was cancelled due to COVID. “Belle is one of the fastest softball players to ever come through our program. Her speed and work ethic not only add to her success but inspires the entire team,” said Lakota West Head Coach Keith Castner


    KK Mathis –Softball– James Madison University

    The multi-talented pitcher and first baseman was named the 2021 GMC Player of the Year and 1st Team All-State as she led the league with 13 homeruns and 50 RBI’s. In addition to her hitting, she led the GMC with an ERA of 1.47 and 20 wins as a starting pitcher. Mathis owns the school record for slugging percentage (1.215) and homeruns in a season (13). She also sits third in Firebird history for homeruns in a career with one season remaining.  “KK is a natural born leader. Her dedication on pitching mound and to the team will guide her successfully in softball and life,” said Lakota West Head Coach Keith Castner


    Kylie Dilley-Track– Northern Kentucky University

    The hurdle specialist placed 3rd at districts and 12th at regionals in the 300 hurdles. In addition, she was a team member of the 400 relay that finished 3rd at districts and 6th at regionals. “Kylie has been a top notch performer for the track and field team since she set foot on the track as a freshman.  She is one of the best hurdlers ever to come through the program but that’s not what defines her career here.  Kylie is one of the best teammates that anyone could have.  She is a true leader that puts the team’s success over her own.  There is no doubt in my mind that she will be successful at NKU.  They are getting a great track and field athlete but an even better person.  The sky is the limit for Kylie as her best track is ahead of her.  I’m excited for her and look forward to her having a stellar senior track and field season,” said Lakota West Head Coach Brenton Eisenhard


    Isabella Gallo-Soccer-Walsh University

    Gallo has played several different roles on the varsity team since her sophomore year. Despite playing as a defender at times during her three year varsity career, Gallo still finished with two goals and five assists in her career.  “Bella has embraced her journey within this program over the last 4 years, serving a variety of roles in our success. She is a reflection of staying committed to improvement and understanding of making the most of opportunities when they present themselves. She helped us reach a state championship, a regional finalist and helping bring this program back to a competitor in the state of Ohio. We are so excited for Bella’s next chapter and can’t wait to see her excel in the next challenge she takes on,” said Lakota West Head Coach Brigit Reder.


    Emily Pate–Soccer–Ashland University

    Pate was a varsity midfielder as a sophomore for Lakota West before switching to year-round club team, 2004 Ohio Elite SA ECNL after the 2019 season. “Emily is a technically gifted player that has the innate ability to get into dangerous attacking positions.  Her final pass and ability to get into the box makes her a constant threat to the opponent.  Most of all she is a great person and teammate.  Her character is of the highest order.  I know she will make an immediate impact for the Ashland Women’s Soccer program,” said 2004 Ohio Elite SA Head Coach Doug Bracken.


    Kylee Simmons-Soccer- University of Missouri

    Simmons started playing club soccer with Cincinnati United Premier before moving on to Cincinnati Development Academy where she was the team’s leading scorer. She’s currently a forward and team captain for the Cincinnati United Girls Academy where she has won two state cup championships. “Kylee’s work rate is second to none. Her willingness to improve daily is what makes her special as a player. And then you get the amazing human on top of it,” said Coach Michael Litvack.


    Sarah Watson-Soccer-Ashland University

    Watson has been a starting goalkeeper for Cincinnati United Premier and more recently for Cincinnati Development Academy. “In the years I have gotten to know Sarah, I have never seen a player so committed to her team on and off the field.  She has rarely ever missed a practice in 10 years.  That alone is strength, commitment, ambition, and love for her teammates.  Sarah goes out of her way to connect with everyone she meets.  It is a constant, it’s her nature to go out of her way to make sure you are welcomed, appreciated and loved.  Sarah’s character and the culture she creates will be a blessing to any school, team, locker room, workplace, family and beyond.” said Coach Kurt.

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