Dawson County High School varsity catcher Micaiah Jenkins made history Feb. 12 as she signed a scholarship to Columbia International University, where she will be part of the college’s inaugural program.
“Micaiah is making history because she has an opportunity to be one of the first people to play on that team and I just think that’s cool,” said DCHS Head Softball Coach Jimmy Pruett.
Jenkins was the starting catcher for the varsity Lady Tigers her junior and senior year and also played first base. She made the varsity team her sophomore year. Last year, her batting average was .348 with an on base percentage of .386 and 13 RBIs.
“A very small percentage of high school athletes ever get the opportunity to sign a college scholarship so this is a great accomplishment,” said Athletic Director Grady Turner. “It shows what hard work, perseverance and most importantly keeping your grades up will do for you.”
And that hard work and determination has paid off for Jenkins, who currently has a 3.54 GPA, was named Player of the Week for the Dawson County News six times in 2017 and received several art awards and education honors awards. She also made First Team All-Region last year.
Jenkins, who has been playing softball since she was seven, also plays for Georgia Force 18U Travel Team out of Woodstock and had a .429 battering average with a .429 on base percentage and 3 RBIs last fall.
Her parents, Sandy and Freddy, said Jenkins is a very dedicated player. She’s played despite having several severe injuries.
“She’s played with broken feet, broken legs, even in times when the doctors told her ‘do not play’ she has put a brace on and played,” said Sandy.
That energy is what stood out to CIU’s Head Softball Coach Sara Allen, who said Jenkins will bring a lot of passion, energy and confidence to the team.
“When I first met Micaiah just the thing that stood out to me is her sweet spirit, her bright smile and just the positive energy that she exudes,” said Allen. “When you’re building a new softball program you look for not just the athlete but you look for the whole package: The student, the personality, somebody that would be a joy to coach because you’re going to go through stuff when you’re building a program.”
The 17-year-old is excited to be part of a brand new program and hopes that the team can make it to championship games in the 2018 season.
“All the other colleges I went to didn’t feel like home to me,” said Jenkins.
Jenkins has already met some of her future teammates through a team bonding weekend where the girls really hit it off.
“We bonded really well together,” she said.
Jenkins plans to pursue a degree in early childhood education to become an elementary school teacher.
“I am over the moon excited,” said her mother Sandy. “I will be at every game I can possibly be at.”