Students from West Hartford’s Hall High School participated in a ceremony on Nov. 8, 2023, which is the first day of the early signing period for most Division I and II college sports.
By Ronni Newton
Fifteen members of the Hall High School Class of 2024 who plan to continue their sports at the collegiate level gathered in the gym Wednesday morning with family, friends, and coaches to celebrate their commitment.
Student-athletes who will be competing at the Division I and Division II level also signed national letters of intent on what is the first day of the early signing period for the Class of 2024 for most sports. The early signing period for Division I football begins Dec. 20.
Jason Siegal, West Hartford Public Schools athletic director said this was the largest group that had ever participated in a November commitment event. Conard held a signing ceremony later in the day, and both West Hartford high schools also hold ceremonies in the spring, as well as signing ceremonies if D1 or D2 commitments are made during other periods of the year.
“I think this is the most impressive group we’ve had to date,” Siegal said, noting the commitment of time, money, food, and even laundry that not only the students but also their families have expended to get to this point.
Principal Dan Zittoun said while Hall has a long tradition of excellence in academics as well as athletics, when he saw this list of students he was “blown away by the collection of students, and the schools and the sports.” He said that while he has no doubt the student-athletes will excel at their chosen sports, “they are all going to make their campuses better campuses because of the human beings that they are.”
The coaches took turns speaking about the students who have participated and in most cases captained their teams, praised the hard work, commitment, ability, and leadership skills of the athletes. Many of the the also coaches echoed a common theme – that a student “is a better person than they are an athlete” – noting characteristics like integrity, perseverance, focus, dedication, and being an outstanding teammate.
This year’s senior class faced the added challenge of beginning their freshman year in the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The students recognized Wednesday included:
- Ellie Goldstein, field hockey, University of Maryland
- Chase Hanawalt, baseball, Fordham University
- Mason Hébert, baseball, Stonehill College
- Sally Kritzman, soccer, Ithaca College
- Simon Levy, football, Johns Hopkins University
- Isaac Mahler, cross country and track and field, Boston University
- Madison Maxwell, soccer, University of New Haven
- Lauren Moskal, track and field, University of Chicago
- Jack O’Neill, football, Middlebury College
- Rylan Priest, cross country and track and field, George Washington University
- Anna Siciliano, track and field, Yale University
- Gabe Sisk, track and field, UMass-Lowell
- Liam Wright, track and field, Columbia University
- Nickolas Xavier, track and field, Central Connecticut State University
- Jonathan York, track and field, Princeton University
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