Sophie Wallace is entering her fourth year starting for the Corona del Mar High girls’ water polo team.
On Wednesday, she made her college decision official — and her best friend also played a role.
Wallace signed her national letter of intent to play women’s water polo at Stanford University. Later Wednesday, she was set to have a celebration at her house with her childhood friend in fellow CdM senior Kendall Kipp, who also signed with Stanford for women’s volleyball.
Wallace and Kipp were two of many local high school seniors committing to colleges on Wednesday, the initial signing day for sports other than football. Newport Harbor had the most athletes with 16, followed by Corona del Mar (11), Laguna Beach (eight), Edison (eight), Huntington Beach (five), Marina (four), Pacifica Christian Orange County (four), Fountain Valley (three), Sage Hill (three) and Ocean View (two).
Other standouts who committed on Wednesday included Marina’s Jakob Alamudun (Lehigh men’s basketball), Laguna Beach’s Kylee Matheson (Stanford women’s beach volleyball), Newport Harbor’s Dayne Chalmers (UC Santa Barbara men’s volleyball) and Joseph Karlous (Pepperdine), Ocean View’s Gavin Kennedy (Cal State Fullerton baseball), Edison’s Cole Power (UCLA men’s volleyball), Sage Hill’s Amiyah De’Long (Stony Brook women’s volleyball), Fountain Valley’s Nicole Weber (UC Berkeley women’s rowing), and Pacifica Christian’s Maddy Alaluf (Southern Illinois women’s soccer).
Stanford claimed one of Orange County’s most feared players in Kipp. The 6-foot-4 outside hitter led the Sea Kings to an undefeated Surf League championship and the quarterfinals of the CIF Southern Section Division 2 playoffs.
Wallace was one of five CdM girls’ water polo players to sign, joining Ella Abbott (Michigan), Carter Britt (Michigan), Layne Anzaldo (UCLA) and Chloe Smith (Bucknell).
The rest of the girls’ water polo players committing were Laguna Beach’s Claire Kelly (UC Santa Barbara), Evie Laptin (UC Santa Barbara), Bryn Gioffredi (Brown) and Quinn Winter (UCLA), Newport Harbor’s Kili Skibby (UC Irvine), Annie Rankin (Michigan), Brooke Banta (UCLA), and Huntington Beach’s Courtney Heydorff (UC Santa Barbara) and Nicca Fallah (UC San Diego).
A top swimming star at Newport Harbor, Ayla Spitz, signed with Cal. Spitz, last year’s CIF Southern Section Division 1 champion in the girls’ 500 freestyle, will be going a different direction than her twin sister, Zoe, who signed with Rice University. Two other Sunset League girls’ swimming standouts also committed in Marina’s Sage Matsushima (Brown) and Fountain Valley’s Hannah Farrow (Arizona).
CdM’s Kyle Pham, last year’s Daily Pilot Dream Team Boys’ Tennis Player of the Year, signed with Southern Methodist University.
Other baseball players who committed were Newport Harbor’s John Olmstead (USC) and Cameron Mahaffy (Cal Poly San Luis Obispo), Marina’s Cory Lewis (UC Santa Barbara), Edison’s Ted Burton (Michigan), Laguna Beach’s Cutter Clawson (BYU) and Kolton Freeman (Dartmouth), and CdM’s Luc Stuka (Cal State San Marcos).
Soccer players who committed included Newport Harbor’s Mackenzie Blazer (East Carolina), Emily Johnson (UC Santa Barbara) and Sofia Velazquez (Cal State Dominguez Hills), Huntington Beach’s Alyssa Hornback (Sonoma State), Kekoa Nelson, (Cal State Dominguez Hills), CdM’s Alyssa McKenzie (Eastern Washington) and Jenna Nighswonger (Florida State), Edison’s Sophia Smith (Point Loma) and Malia Walenceiwic (University of San Diego), Pacifica Christian’s Hunter Alexander (Occidental College) and Sadie Hill (Westmont College), Fountain Valley’s Chantelle Sanchez (UC Irvine), and Marina’s Kellie Hallworth (Cal State San Bernardino).
Below is the list of local athletes who committed on Wednesday:
Brooke Banta, UCLA women’s water polo
Ethan Barnes, UC Santa Barbara men’s golf
Mackenzie Blazer, East Carolina women’s soccer
Dayne Chalmers, UC Santa Barbara men’s volleyball
Chloe Hyde, North Carolina women’s rowing
Emily Johnson, UC Santa Barbara women’s soccer
Joseph Karlous, Pepperdine men’s volleyball
Delaney Knipp, Kent State women’s lacrosse
Cameron Mahaffy, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo baseball
John Olmstead, USC baseball
Annie Rankin, Michigan women’s water polo
Kili Skibby, UC Irvine women’s water polo
Ayla Spitz, UC Berkeley women’s swimming
Zoe Spitz, Rice women’s swimming
Sofia Velazquez, Cal State Dominguez Hills women’s soccer
Josh Watkins, Montana men’s tennis
Corona del Mar
Ella Abbott, Michigan women’s water polo
Layne Anzaldo, UCLA women’s water polo
Carter Britt, Michigan women’s water polo
Kristina Evloeva, UC Davis women’s tennis
Kendall Kipp, Stanford women’s volleyball
Janie Marcus, Pomona-Pitzer women’s tennis
Alyssa McKenzie, Eastern Washington women’s soccer
Kyle Pham, Southern Methodist men’s tennis
Chloe Smith, Bucknell women’s water polo
Luc Stuka, Cal State San Marcos baseball
Sophie Wallace, Stanford women’s water polo
Cori Cansdale, Texas A&M equestrian
Cutter Clawson, BYU baseball
Kolton Freeman, Dartmouth baseball
Bryn Gioffredi, Brown women’s water polo
Claire Kelly, UC Santa Barbara women’s water polo
Evie Laptin, UC Santa Barbara women’s water polo
Kylee Matheson, Stanford women’s beach volleyball
Quinn Winter, UCLA women’s water polo
Jenna Bloom, Arkansas softball
Ted Burton, Michigan baseball
Aly Fulbright, Cal State Monterey Bay women’s volleyball
Maggie Gunther, Concordia women’s volleyball
Cole Power, UCLA men’s volleyball
Sophia Smith, Point Loma women’s soccer
Serena Starks, Princeton softball
Malia Walenceiwic, University of San Diego women’s soccer
Nicca Falah, UC San Diego women’s water polo
Courtney Heydorff, UC Santa Barbara women’s water polo
Alyssa Hornback, Sonoma State women’s soccer
Kekoa Nelson, Cal State Dominguez Hills women’s soccer
Jenna Nighswonger, Florida State women’s soccer
Jakob Alamudun, Lehigh men’s basketball
Kellie Hallworth, Cal State San Bernardino women’s soccer
Cory Lewis, UC Santa Barbara baseball
Sage Matsushima, Brown women’s swimming
Pacifica Christian Orange County
Maddy Alaluf, Southern Illinois women’s soccer
Hunter Alexander, Occidental College men’s soccer
AJ Pujols, Vanguard men’s golf
Sadie Hill, Westmont College women’s soccer
Hannah Farrow, Arizona women’s swimming
Chantelle Sanchez, UC Irvine women’s soccer
Nicole Weber, UC Berkeley women’s rowing
Isabelle Cooper, USC women’s rowing
Amiyah De’Long, Stony Brook women’s volleyball
Jason Schreiber, Pennsylvania men’s swimming
Dominic Falcon, UC Santa Barbara men’s swimming
Gavin Kennedy, Cal State Fullerton baseball
Sports editor David Carrillo Peñaloza and staff writer Andrew Turner contributed to this report.