El Paisano

Signing Event Held for Graduating Rio Hondo Volleyball Members

Sara+Harding+%28left%29%2C+seated+by+Natalie+Magallon+and+Bree+Newton+%28right%29.+Harding+was+a+part+of+the+indoor+and+beach+volleyball+teams+while+being+a+copy+editor+for+El+Paisano+during+her+last+two+semesters+at+Rio+Hondo.
Sara Harding (left), seated by Natalie Magallon and Bree Newton (right). Harding was a part of the indoor and beach volleyball teams while being a copy editor for El Paisano during her last two semesters at Rio Hondo.

Sara Harding (left), seated by Natalie Magallon and Bree Newton (right). Harding was a part of the indoor and beach volleyball teams while being a copy editor for El Paisano during her last two semesters at Rio Hondo.

Noah Garcia/El Paisano News

Noah Garcia/El Paisano News

Sara Harding (left), seated by Natalie Magallon and Bree Newton (right). Harding was a part of the indoor and beach volleyball teams while being a copy editor for El Paisano during her last two semesters at Rio Hondo.

A signing event took place Thursday, May 17 in the Rio Hondo pool area for Lady Roadrunner volleyball members who will be moving on from the college. Michell Chavez, Sara Harding, Michelle Hawkins, Madison Mader,  Natalie Magallon, Victoria Martinez and Bree Newton were the Ladies recognized for their efforts as Rio student-athletes.

Family, friends, teammates and coaches of the Rio Ladies looked on as the Ladies signed letters signaling their advancement to the next level.

“We’re here today to honor [the Ladies moving on] because they’re all transferring to the university level to continue their pursuit of getting a bachelor’s degree,” Coach Esko said prior to introducing each of the Lady Roadrunners on their way out of Rio.

While they may miss Rio in the future, the Ladies were all smiles as Coach Esko called each of them out one-by-one.

Five of the young woman will be continuing their athletic careers at their respective universities, with locations ranging from nearby Los Angeles all the way to New York. Two of the Ladies will be focusing on their academics.

Among the Lady Roadrunner volleyball members recognized was Rio Hondo’s Female Student-Athlete of the Year, Madison Mader. Mader won the award for her contributions to both the soccer and beach volleyball teams.

Mader will be moving to CSULA where she will continue her soccer career, but she is not dismissing her education and will be looking into a future as a social worker.

Sara Harding will be moving on to Ottawa University in Arizona. Harding will be continuing her beach volleyball career there, and she can’t wait to move on.

“Being able to have a real college experience,” Harding said after being asked what she is looking forward to most at her new school. “And being able to be away from my parents, but it’s not too far. I can always come home if I want to.”

Harding wasn’t always planning to leave home when it came time to transfer. She just loved what Ottawa University had to offer.

Another Lady Roadrunner continuing her volleyball career at the next level is Bree Newton. She decided to make the move east to play for Friends University in Kansas.

“I had a few schools that I really narrowed it down to,” Newton said. “Friends is the heart of Wichita, it’s five minutes from the airport, five minutes from downtown. Everything’s really in Wichita, so that was kind of my deciding factor. I knew I wanted to get out of California.”

Newton has family in Kansas whom she has yet to meet, which is exciting for her. She’ll also have another Roadrunner joining her in the state: Michelle Hawkins.

Hawkins will also be on her way to Kansas in the fall as well. She’ll be at Southwestern College in Winfield, though.

Natalie Magallon will be continuing her volleyball career on the opposite end of the country. She’ll be all the way in New York. She wore her new school, SUNY Potsdam’s maroon color with pride at the signing event.

Two members of the Rio Hondo volleyball squad recognized will not be playing at the next level. Michell Chavez and Victoria Martinez will continue to get their education, however.

Chavez will be attending the prestigious University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) with her eyes set on becoming a lawyer.  

Martinez is going to the University of Hawaii at Manoa, where she will be studying exercise science. She grew up in Los Angeles is looking forward to all that Hawaii has to offer.

To end the signing event, the Ladies moving on gathered with their teammates, coaches and friends for photos. While they may be on their way out, Chavez, Harding, Hawkins, Mader, Magallon, Martinez and Newton will always be Roadrunners.

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Signing Event Held for Graduating Rio Hondo Volleyball Members