Amid distancing, Hawks baseball player signs


For The Madera Tribune

Liberty baseball player Trevor Porter shows off his National Letter of Intent to play baseball at Simpson University that he signed on April 10 in front of the Liberty football stadium.

 

Fulfilling a dream didn’t come as easy as Liberty Hawks three-sport standout Trevor Porter would have liked, but the outcome was worth it.

Porter officially signed a National Letter of Intent on April 10 at the Liberty Hawks football stadium amid social distancing. He was the only one at the table to sign and had friends and family in their cars watching the proceedings.

“It was always a dream of my sister Miranda to go to college and play at the next level, but she never got the opportunity to do it,” Porter said. “She always wanted to sign that piece of paper. With the coronavirus, she didn’t want this to be swept under the rug. She didn’t want people to think it’s not a big deal. It was sweet of her to throw a little signing party for me for people to recognize how special it is. There were quite a few people there. They stayed in their cars and watched me sign. It was really sweet. I loved it.”

Porter, who also played football and soccer, will get a chance at the next level at Simpson University in Redding.

“It’s super awesome,” he said. “It’s always been a dream of mine to go to college to play baseball. When Simpson gave me the opportunity, it was a dream come true.”

Porter credits first-year Liberty baseball coach Derrik Kuhn for the opportunity.

“My coach took me to a showcase in January that had about 20-25 colleges there and Simpson was one of them,” Porter said. “They saw me and liked what they saw. They talked to my coach about me. Ever since then, they got my e-mail and things started from there.

“It wasn’t too difficult to communicate during this time,” Porter said. “It was a lot of over-the-phone calls. It was trusting my coach, Derrick Kuhn, talking to their assistant coach for me and having him figuring it out for me. He helped me out a lot during the process.”

In addition to Simpson, North Central Minnesota was another four-year college looking at Porter. He also had West Hills College-Coalinga and Porterville College looking at him.

“I was juggling between Minnesota and Simpson because I wanted to go to a four-year college and those were the only two looking at me,” he said. “With Minnesota, my parents weren’t for it, it was way too far and the tuition was way too much. Simpson just fit. It was the right amount of distance. They are an NAIA school. It was just like a perfect fit.”

Porter was a team captain, a second team All-North Sequoia League and All-Madera Tribune football player in the fall and was also the team captain of the baseball team. Those leadership qualities helped in getting signed by Simpson.

“They liked my leadership and my work ethic,” Porter said. “They said I was very hard working and not afraid about showing my leadership capabilities. Being the team captain of the baseball and football team, I loved it. It really made me step up and take control of that leadership spot and learn how to be one.”

Porter will have a chance to start his freshman year. He originally was offered a scholarship by Simpson in early March and took some time to think about it.

“Coach Kuhn told me to take two weeks to make a decision,” Porter said. “I really thought things through. About a week-and-a-half in, I committed to Simpson. It’s pretty perfect. It’s about five hours away. It’s the perfect distance to be away from home, but if I need anything, home is right there.”

Porter plans to major in kinesiology to become a physical trainer and help kids with injuries to become better athletes.

“I loved my Liberty career,” he said. “I was a league champ twice and won a valley. I loved every minute of high school.”

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