Sports

Davison goes with Longhorns

With the biggest decision of her young life needing to be made and college recruiters anxious to hear the outcome, Stephanie Davison called a family meeting.

A couple of hours later, two-time defending Class 4A state tennis champion had made up her mind. She was heading south.

Davison, a senior at South Kitsap High School, verbally committed to play tennis for the University of Texas last week, bringing an end to a long recruiting period.

Her verbal commitment is non-binding but Davison said she will accept a full scholarship and attend the Big 12 Conference powerhouse next fall.    

“It was all my decision, but I asked (my parents) opinion,” Davison said on Monday. “My dad said Michigan or Texas and my mom was leaning to UW because it was close to home. It was the hardest decision of my life, by far. It is a big decision.”

Davison took official recruiting trip to Texas, Michigan and Colorado and visited Washington on an unofficial visit.

“I’m glad it’s over,” Davison said. “I had gotten so tired of it. I mean, it was fun but it was definitely tiring.”

She said she was equally split between Washington, Michigan and Texas. Washington because it was close to home, Michigan because of its academics and the beauty of Ann Arbor and Texas because of the familiarity of the coaching staff.

“I really couldn’t have gone wrong with any of them,” Davison said.

Davison will play for former Washington tennis coach Patty Fendrick-McCain, who was named coach at Texas this past summer. Fendrick-McCain coached at Washington for nine years and was named the 2004 Wilson/Intercollegiate Tennis Association National Coach of the Year last season.

Fendrick-McCain replaced Jeff Moore who led the Longhorns to two national titles in his 23 years at Texas. The University of Texas won national titles in women’s tennis in 1993 and 1995 and finished the 2004-2005 season ranked third in the country.

Davison said she had been in contact with Fendrick-McCain over the past couple of years and that helped her in making a decision.

She also said she liked the city of Austin and what Texas had to offer.

“At first I didn’t know if I would like it,” Davison said. “It’s a lot different than here.”

Davison, who is a top-ranked national junior player, will begin her quest for a third-straight state title when spring sports opens practice Feb. 27. The state tennis tournament will be held May 26-27.

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