First Posted: 6/16/2011
LUMBERTON Despite having one of the smaller statures on the soccer field, Lumbertons Holly Graham knew that wasnt going to stop her from playing at the next level.
I actually thought it was going to be my academics that held me back, Graham said. When it came to class work, I was fine. When it was time to take a test, I didnt do so good.
Graham admits her grades may have cost her a chance to play at one school, but as the saying goes, When a door closes, another opens. The missed opportunity allowed Louisburg College to swoop in and sign the all-conference and all-region selection as a junior to a letter of intent earlier this month.
I really liked the coach (Andy Stokes) and it was a much smaller school, Graham said. I think it will help me in my academics. I visited Barton and tried out with them, but I couldnt get in because of academics.
Now that Graham is set to continue her soccer career as an attacking center midfielder for the Hurricanes, she knows she will have to still battle the height issue.
My dad told me when a coach comes to look at me and someone else that is taller, they are usually going to go with the bigger girl, Graham said. So I have to go out there and play stronger than everyone else to show the coaches.
After receiving the bad news from Barton, Grahams father and Lumberton teammate Chelsea Canadys mother began talking about getting the pair into the same college. On a lark, Graham filled out an application to Louisburg.
It was a last minute decision, Graham said. I applied and was accepted.
Even though Graham and Canady are set to continue as teammates next season, she wishes the other three senior members of the Pirates soccer squad were joining them.
It makes me happy knowing they are all going to college to play a sport, Graham said. I played with Damilia (Brooks) for years. It makes we wish were were all still staying together.