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Alison Benz Signs on to Play Softball at Gannon University

by cnewman

It's never an easy decision on where you want to spend the next four years of your life after graduating from high school.

Many factors play in to a decision like what kind of academic programs do the colleges have? It is close to home? How are their athletics programs?

Mt. Mercy Academy senior softball player Alison Benz factored in all those questions and when it was all said and done choose Gannon University to continue her education and softball career.

Gannon had everything Benz wanted. It has a solid softball program and a great academic program. She chose Gannon over 12 others schools.

"I applied to about 12 schools," stated Benz. "But, I really like the school. And, I kept on going back there for pitching clinics."

In a process that took a very long time, Benz is happy that it's over and she can now just focus on this season, which as off press time the Magic are off to a 2-0 start.

"It has been a really long process trying to decide on a college," stated Benz, after the school held a signing day for her and Kayla Larson. "I am glad I signed and hopefully this will enable me to reach all my potential and goals."

Benz has been a sold player for Mt. Mercy since her freshman year. But, last season was extra special as the Magic won the Monsignor Martin Athletic Association title.

The win put the spotlight on Benz and the team. And, because of it, more college started to take notice of her accomplishments.

"It (the title) definitely added to my profile as a pitcher and a player," she said. "And, I am really proud of the team for coming that far."

Another thing she is proud of is the way Mt. Mercy has prepared her for the next chapter of her life.

Mt. Mercy puts a lot of emphasis on athletic, academics and community service, as they want their students to be well rounded when it comes times to head of to college.

Because of this, Benz feels she is better prepared to meet and deal with the challenges that lie ahead.

"It's definitely harder here than at public schools," she said. "It definitely got me more prepared for college and I sat on a couple of classes [at Gannon] and it didn't seem to bad."

As for this season, Benz knows it will be harder for this team to repeat its magical run from last season. But, that still doesn't stop her from believing this team has what it takes to win over title.

"I don't know how we are going to do this year," she said. "But, I hope to win the title again. We did lose a lot of players from last year, so it is going to be a little tough."

"Mount Mercy has positively changed my life forever. Through the inviting community, I was able to grow as a woman, as a daughter, as a friend, and as a member of society. Throughout my time here I have gained an education in both academic areas and life in general through the school's ongoing efforts to educate students on gender inequality, racial injustice, and environmental crisis'. Furthermore, Mercy has given me the space to gain confidence that 4 years ago I never would have guessed I would have. Mount Mercy has helped me take that initial step toward becoming the strong woman of color I am today. At Mercy you are more than just a student, you are whoever you wish to be."

Melina Courtney

Class of 2022

"My future, success, and the ability to be an empowered woman in society come from Mount Mercy. My school is a strong foundation for my role in life. From attending Mount Mercy, I can say with confidence, that I will graduate with the mindset that I can accomplish anything. Mercy is my home and my sanctuary to be whoever I want. Mount Mercy has been bringing forth generations of strong intellectual women into the world, and I am more than honored to be one of them. Mercy teaches girls more than academics, but also about the world around us. As a mercy community, we give back to the world because it is our home. From my four years at Mercy, I have been educated on pushing for equality and peace and the understanding that there is no limit to what I can do. I have the confidence to go out in the world and make a difference because being a Mercy girl has given me that opportunity. "

Cassidy Reid

Class of 2022

"Mercy is more than just a school. Mercy is my second home and a shoulder to lean on. Mount Mercy has given me the confidence and resources to pursue my passions and make the world a more inclusive place, propelling me to take strides into male-dominated fields. Mercy blessed me with an environment to grow intellectually and in the community, giving me the foundation to make a tangible impact while making lifelong friendships."

Adrianna Awald

Class of 2022

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