Any number of factors can influence a recruit’s eventual decision regarding their collegiate destination – pedigree, location, teammates and more have all defined recruiting journeys for many, with commitments often following based on some combination of them all.
For Lake Dallas senior Ruthie Forson, the factors were simple – proximity to the family she feels she owes so much of her success to and her new coach’s willingness to come to her instead of the other way around.
Forson announced her commitment to Southeastern Oklahoma State University last week, which sits around 100 miles from the campus of Lake Dallas High School. Head coach Nicole Solum expressed interest through Forson’s club program, Conquerors Volleyball, and attended an April tournament, which helped solidify the early relationship. A visit to campus later, Forson had all but made her choice.
“Since I was looking at a bunch of schools, I think the best thing through all of it was that she came looking at me,” Forson said. “I didn’t go looking for her. I think that was probably the best thing that happened during the whole recruiting process, because it made things a lot less stressful.”
Still, while Forson was effusive in her praise of all of her coaches and those surrounding her, she said one person in particular was thrilled about both her signing and the prospect of being able to take the short drive northward to continue watching her compete.
“[I just want to thank] my family and my sister, who have been my biggest supporters,” Forson said. “My sister has been my coach basically my whole life. … [She was] very excited. I’m a huge family person.”
While new facilities are incoming to Southeastern Oklahoma and Forson said that the school and program “just felt right” during her visit, the thing she’s most excited about is simply being able to continue doing what she knows best.
“I’m able to do what I’ve loved the most and what I’ve done my whole life, pretty much,” she said. “And at a higher level – I guess that’s the exciting [part].”
Forson will be back for one more run in green and white this fall with her fourth head coach in as many seasons, as local club coach Kristinn Holbrooks steps through the program’s revolving door to lead the Lady Falcons.
Though the team has made the postseason in five straight attempts, Forson said she feels the program is set up for a deeper run this fall behind a bevy of returning starters.
“Oh, I am so excited. I think we’ll go far,” she said. “We’ve got a bunch of just good players overall and we’re all super close. I think it’s going to be really good this season.”
Aiding her in leading that group, she said, is a sense of relief after finalizing her college commitment.
“It is great. It’s [way] less stressful than it has been,” Forson said. “I’m glad I can enjoy my senior year, now, without thinking about all that.”
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