The Next Step, Four Spring Hill Panthers Sign to Colleges


Photographer: Shailyn Higginbotham

Seniors Jayme Dowell, Marshall Lipsey, Easton Ballard, and Jordan Hodges all sign away to their respective colleges to continue to play their sports, 11/10.

Yesterday, Spring Hill staff and students all got to witness a big milestone for four student athletes. Seniors Jayme Dowell, Marshall Lipsey, Easton Ballard, and Jordan Hodges, all had their signing days. It is a special thing to see these athletes get the opportunity to continue their sports at the next level, while at the same time getting to continue their learning as well. These seniors have put in countless hours to perfect their craft, and even though the job isn’t finished, it’ll be great to see what each one of their futures has in store.

“I’m very proud of her as a coach, but I’m even more proud of her as a dad,” Spring Hill girls soccer coach and father of Jayme Dowell, James Dowell said.

It is one thing to be a coach and see your athlete grow over the years and sign to a college, however it’s a completely other thing to see your child do the same thing, fortunately for Mr. Dowell, he got to experience both. Ever since her and her family moved here in 2018, they have mad an impact on the Lady Panthers soccer team. Jayme had some big shoes to fill, as her older sister Olivia Dowell signed to Oklahoma State University in 2019. However she has been able to do so very well, and as of yesterday she is signed and committed to the University of Central Oklahoma. It’ll be exciting to see how she carries on her athletics and academics as a UCO Bronco.

“The last year and a half, I’ve been able to coach these boys,” Varsity baseball coach Trevor Peterson said. “They’re tremendous leaders to lean on. I know y’all have been working on this for several years, to get to this point, and it is a dream come true to finally be here.”

There are multiple things that can represent a good program. One of those things is having a player sign to a college to continue playing, but could you imagine three players signing at the same time? Well for the Spring Hill Panthers baseball team, they don’t have to imagine, it’s a reality. Easton, Marshall, and Jordan are all multiple sport athletes and excelling students. They have had plenty of hours to hone their craft together, and have built up years of team chemistry. Each one of them have played baseball and basketball together in high-school. Easton and Marshall have also had the opportunity to cheer on Jordan on Friday nights, as Jordan has also competed in football. Through all of the similarities they share, they can add another to the list, as they all signed to their future schools together. Being a student athlete can be challenging, however all four of these athletes have set the blueprint very well, on how to be one.

“I am so proud of each and every one of you for how you have represented Spring Hill,” Head athletic director Weston Griffis said. “It was just a phenomenal to watch all of you compete. It was truly a blast.”

Being able to keep your grades up and prepare for athletic events, is very time consuming. These seniors have been able to do so very proficiently, and have excelled in both parts. Each of the four set the standard for being a student athlete.

“I can’t say enough of how proud I am of y’all,” Coach Peterson said.

The Spring Hill baseball team had a deep run in the playoffs last season, and now look to pick up right where they left off. While there were seniors last year that graduated and are no longer a part of the team, there are seniors right there ready to fill their spots. Three of these seniors would be the previously mentioned signees. Marshall, Easton, and Jordan will each look to lead their team to even further in the playoffs, and then continue their play at the next level. Marshall signed and committed to TCU (Texas Christian University) and will join the Horned Frogs baseball team. Easton signed and committed to the Panola College Ponies, and Jordan Hodges signed and committed to Cenetary College to become a member of the Gents baseball team. The Panther’s Paw newsroom would all like to send a round of congratulations to the four seniors, and wish you all the best of luck at your respective colleges.

“There was a lot of hard work and dedication and sacrifice to build to this moment. So y’all enjoy this, but remember this is just the beginning for y’all,” Coach Griffis said.

Signing Day Photo Gallery: