College-bound athletes set new sights after Sabine Pass success

Published 12:14 am Friday, May 3, 2024

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SABINE PASS — Coach Andie Corkran had a hard time finding the right words at first.

But when she did, the passion and joy was evident.

The nine-year coaching veteran at Sabine Pass High School was remarking on a special group of student-athletes who signed on to pursue college sports.

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“It is my first two signings in volleyball,” she said. “Then, I have my other ones and they played volleyball for me and basketball and track and softball. It gives me a satisfying feeling, like I am really doing something for these kids and pushing them to go to the next level.”

Those going to the next level include:

  • Brianna Barrera – Cisco College, soccer
  • Jamiling Vela Cruz – Jarvis Christian College, volleyball
  • Elisa “Willie” Castillo – Texas College, softball
  • Keyanni Overstreet – New Jersey City University, volleyball,

Corkran said the group’s success inspires her to continue coaching.

“It pushes me along,” she said. “We’re adults, we all have feelings too, then you see the product put out. Then, they go to college, pursue their dreams and it’s a really amazing feeling.”

Barrera is known as a determined go-getter who never complained during her many workouts.

“She always put it all out there and took it serious,” Corkran said. “She truly showed that she cared, and I never had a problem with her.”

Cruz is known for her devotion to volleyball.

“She was my middle blocker all the way around, and she is going to play college volleyball. She is going to be a defensive specialist, playing the back row only,” Corkran said. “She really, never once, was disrespectful. She didn’t miss a practice, never complained. It’s hard to find those athletes these days.”

Castillo has played softball since she was 4, according to Corkran, who she described as dedicated and still playing select ball.

“She has been pitching forever,” Corkran said. “Pitching is her thing. She is clutch in that department. She is also a go-getter. She is fearless with her pitching.”

Overstreet energized the program when joining for her freshman year.

She showed a devotion that included adding select ball play during her sophomore year.

Corkran said Overstreet is very brave, evidenced by her decision to attend college in New Jersey.

“They leave a major hole,” Corkran said about the fearsome foursome, adding in all, she is graduating 11 seniors from her volleyball team.

“The girls gave me so much the last three or four years,” she said. “They played together. We made it to the playoffs. It’s going to leave a major hole with all of them leaving.

“The standard that they set was pretty high. I have a very young and hungry group ready to start this next season. Those are going to be some big shoes to fill, but hey, we are not lowering the standard.”