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Juan Diego Athletes Sign Letters of Intent

May 05, 2016 01:18PM ● Published by Julie Slama

By Julie Slama | julie@mycityjournals.com

Draper - Hard work has paid off for several athletes at Juan Diego High School as they have been offered scholarships to continue playing at the next level.

On April 13 two members of the Soaring Eagles girls basketball team signed their letters of intent to play basketball in college. AnMarie Nelson and Mia Berenguer will continue at the next level. Berenguer will take her basketball skills to Treasure Valley Community College in Ontario, Ore. Nelson will play both basketball and volleyball at PostUniversity in Waterbury, Conn.

“I had offers from other schools, but Post seemed like a great fit for me,” Nelson said. “It is a small community and the coach is amazing. She played in the WNBA and knows what she is talking about. The school itself reminds me a lot of Juan Diego.”

Nelson, daughter of Tony and Jenny Nelson of Draper, was the second leading scorer on this year’s Juan Diego team that won its region. She also led the team in rebounds.

“I was more of an inside post because of my size,” Nelson said. “At Post I will be playing more outside, so I have been working on my shots outside the key.”

Besides playing for Juan Diego, Nelson played on the Rebels club team for the past four seasons. Her Rebels coach, Josh Archuleta, became Juan Diego’s coach two years ago.

“Nelson has an amazing work ethic,” Archuleta said. “She was used to using her height to sit in the key and score lay ups. We made her work at being a guard and improve her outside game. She was willing to try new things and she became a player that was different than she appeared.”

Nelson plans on studying sports management while at Post. She wants to come back to the University of Utah in four years and get a physical therapy degree as well so she can become an athletic trainer.

Berenguer didn’t begin her high school career at Juan Diego. She moved here after playing varsity ball at a high school in Sacramento, Cal.

“I had to work hard when I first came here because I was the new kid,” Berenguer said. “I had to restart. The game is different here than it is in California. I had to adjust my style of play.”

The daughter of Mark and Ginger Berenguer of Sandy did just that, becoming the team leader for this year’s Soaring Eagles squad. At the point position, Berenger handed out 60 assists on the season while pouring in 151 points. She nailed 34 three pointers when she wasn’t passing the ball.

“Berenguer is a spark plug, she just goes and goes,” Archuleta said.

She plans on studying communications and business marketing while at Treasure Valley.

Also signing letters of intent this sprin are golfer Katie Growe and tennis player Ryan Kempin.

Growe will be going to the University of Idaho, and Kempin is joining his older brother, Brenden, on the University of Notre Dame tennis team.  

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