Girls Varsity Volleyball
Eight Columbus North High School seniors pens to paper on Wednesday (Nov. 13) to finalize their commitments for college athletics and academics.
Three women’s swimmers, two baseball players and one athlete each in women’s soccer, softball and volleyball took part in a ceremony in the lobby of the Bill Stearman Athletic Complex.
Four of the student-athletes are joining NCAA Division I programs. They are baseball players Casper Clark (Indiana University) and Grant Trinkle (University of Kentucky) and women’s swimmers Betsy King (Ball State University) and Olivia Morlok (Ohio University).
The other athletes are soccer player Caroline Hollenkamp (Brandeis University), swimmer Erica Samuel (Indiana Wesleyan University), softball player Sierra Norman (Marian University) and volleyball player Lauren Opalka (Muskingum University).
These are the first eight athletes in the CNHS Class of 2020 to finalize their college choices. Additional Columbus North seniors are expected to do so in ceremonies that will be held in December, February and April.
More information about the athletes who participated in Wednesday’s ceremony and their respective college choices follows.
>> Casper Clark, baseball, Indiana University: The right-handed pitcher went 4-2 with 52 strikeouts and just 11 walks while compiling a 1.99 earned-run average in 38.2 innings as Columbus North went 22-8 and won the CI title at 5-0 last season. Clark also hit .29 with two doubles, two home runs and 18 RBIs. He joins an IU program that went 37-23 overall, 17-7 in the Big Ten and reached the NCAA Tournament in 2019.
>> Caroline Hollenkamp, women’s soccer, Brandeis University (Mass.): The midfielder totaled 24 points on six goals and 12 assists as the Bull Dogs went 14-3-0 overall and won the Conference Indiana championship at 5-0-0. She joins a Brandeis program that completed its season at 11-7-0 overall and 2-5-0 in the University Athletic Association.
>> Betsy King, women’s swimming, Ball State: King placed 18th in the 100 free and 19th in the 50 free in the 2019 IHSAA State Finals with respective times of 52.24 and 24.21. She also helped the 200 medley relay to a 28th-place finish at state in 1:42.81. She joins a Ball State program that placed eighth in the 2019 Mid-American Conference Championships.
>> Olivia Morlok, women’s swimming, Ohio University: Morlok placed eighth in the 500-yard freestyle and 15th in the 200 free in the 2019 IHSAA State Finals with respective times of 5:00.35 and 1:56.05. She also helped the CN 200 medley relay to a 28th-place finish at state in 1:42.81. She will join an Ohio University program that placed fifth in the MAC Championships in 2019.
>> Sierra Norman, softball, Marian University: The infielder hit a team-best .439 with seven doubles, one triple, six home runs and 22 RBIs last spring. She joins a Marian program that went 54-3 overall, 35-0 in the Crossroads League and an NAIA World Series appearance last season.
>> Lauren Opalka, volleyball, Muskingum University (Ohio): The outside hitter and defensive specialist was limited to just four matches because of a knee injury, totaling nine kills, eight service aces and three digs. She joins a Muskingum program that is 26-3 this season and 8-1 in the Ohio Athletic Conference.
>> Erica Samuel, women’s swimming, Indiana Wesleyan: Samuel placed 24 th in the 500 free at the 2019 state meet in 5:12.87. She also helped the CN 200 medley relay to a 28th-place finish at state in 1:42.81. She joins an Indiana Wesleyan program that placed second in the Mid-South Conference and finished seventh in the NAIA Nationals in 2019.
>> Grant Trinkle, baseball, University of Kentucky: The outfielder hit .412 with a CN season-record 44 runs, five doubles, a CN season record-tying seven triples, two home runs, 16 RBIs and 20 stolen bases last spring for Columbus North. He joins a Kentucky program that went 26-29 overall and 7-23 in the Southeastern Conference in 2019.
Two other Columbus North athletes have announced a commitment. They are football player Mitchel Collier (Central Michigan) and softball player Brooke Bruin (DePauw University). Collier will take part in a ceremony in December. Bruin will take part in a ceremony in the spring of 2020.
CN SIGNING LIST FOR 2019-20
A list of the Bull Dogs’ Class of 2020 athletes who plan to compete in collegiate sports is below.
COLUMBUS NORTH CLASS OF 2020
Student, Sport, College Choice
* Brooke Bruin, softball, DePauw University
^ Casper Clark, baseball, Indiana University
# Mitchel Collier, football, Central Michigan
^ Caroline Hollenkamp, women’s soccer, Brandeis University (Mass.)
^ Betsy King, women’s swimming, Ball State
^ Olivia Morlok, women’s swimming, Ohio University
^ Sierra Norman, softball, Marian University
^ Lauren Opalka, volleyball, Muskingum University (Ohio)
^ Erica Samuel, women’s swimming, Indiana Wesleyan
^ Grant Trinkle, baseball, University of Kentucky
^ taking part in ceremony on Nov. 13, 2019
# taking part in ceremony on Dec. 19, 2019
* taking part in a later ceremony; date TBA
PHOTO: Columbus North seniors taking part in a college-bound student-athlete ceremony on Nov. 13 were (front row, from left) Lauren Opalka, Grant Trinkle, Olivia Morlok, Erica Samuel (and back row) Caroline Hollenkamp, Casper Clark, Sierra Norman and Betsy King.