Port St. Joe principal Sissy Godwin welcomed students, faculty and staff, family members, and friends to the school gym Wednesday afternoon, March 9, to celebrate with eight Tiger Shark seniors in what she described as the “first annual official showcase signing ceremony.”
In addition to the six football players who signed, the most in school history, Erica Ramsey and Madelyn Gortemoller were included in the ceremony even though both had earlier signed scholarships.
Ramsey will be attending Chipola College on a softball scholarship, while Gortemoller will be running track and cross country at Mobile University.
Ramsey is the lone senior on the Tiger Shark softball team, while Gortemoller most recently won the 800 meter run and finished second in the 1600 meter run at the Bozeman Meet on Thursday, March 3.
The six student-athletes to sign football scholarships are, in alphabetical order, quarterback Colin Amison (Webber International University, Babson Park, Florida); lineman Kobe Flowers (Florida Memorial, Miami Gardens); linebacker and fullback Aiden Gainer (Florida Memorial); wide receiver and defensive back Nick Jefferson (Carson-Newman University, Jefferson City, Tennessee); lineman Justice Peacock (Webber); and Dakota Quinn (Independence Community College, Independence, Kansas).
Despite playing most of his senior year on a gimpy knee, Amison finished his high school career with a .600 completion rate (299/498), 4,457 yards and 48 touchdowns. Having surgery after the season, Amison said that “(the knee) is getting better every day, (and) I’m ready to win some ball games.”
Peacock, his future Warrior teammate, recorded 80 total tackles on defense along with 35 pancakeblocks on offense, and is ready to help protect his quarterback once again.
Like Peacock, Flowers provided impressive numbers both defensively (84 total tackles) and offensively (34 pancake blocks). Joining Flowers as a Lion at Florida Memorial, Gainer had a career total of 261 tackles (7.3 a game), 9.5 sacks, two interceptions, and four caused fumbles.
Jefferson, racking up 80 receptions, 1,505 yards (18.8 average), 1,750 all purpose yards and 18 touchdowns in three years as a wide receiver, also had 80 tackles from his safety position. In St. Joe’s 40-36 loss to South Walton, the speedy Jefferson caught nine passes for 179 yards and three scores along with 11 tackles.
Even though Quinn missed virtually every game of last year’s football season, he averaged 23.5 yards per catch his junior year on 23 receptions. He also gained 694 all purpose yards in nine games and scored five touchdowns.
In his introductory remarks, football coach and athletic director Tanner Jones said that each of the student-athletes was “blessed to have a chance to go to college and play their sport,” and how each was “academically able to do so.”
Given a chance to speak, they all said words of thanks to God, family, teachers, and coaches, and as Quinn noted, “for pushing me, (because) without them I don’t know where I’d be.”
Echoing his teammate, Gainer expressed his gratitude to all who had a hand in “allowing me to pursue my dream.”
Amison “thanked the community for welcoming me and treating me like family.”
Ramsey, last to receive the microphone, said that she “encouraged all of you (students) to work for your dreams.”
The Star congratulates these student-athletes and wishes them well.