Handsome Bearden Armoreite
Aalicia Arizona Mitchell is no stranger to the soccer field where she has spent countless hours training and playing the game she loves. However, the Ardmore High School senior was unsure about continuing her college career.
That uncertainty disappeared Thursday when Mitchell signed to Pratt Community College in Kansas.
“I’ve been playing soccer for about 15 years now and I really didn’t think I would get to this level,” Mitchell said. “It’s really big. I’m going to be the first girl in my family to go to university, mostly on a sports scholarship.
That fact should help him reach great heights and Lady Tigers first-year head coach Delaney Priddy thinks it’s just the beginning.
“She’s just going to grow from here,” Priddy said. “From what I know, she has played football all her life and has always worked to improve. So I think she can only go up from here. She probably has the best foot skills on the team, so she can definitely translate that into the college game. It will be very beneficial for them in Pratt.
However, Mitchell is not one to take all the credit. She knows that Priddy made a big difference during her short stay at Ardmore.
“Coach Priddy really helped,” Mitchell said. “She’s there not only for football, but also for mental health and our issues and everything. That’s really been a big part of that too.
Only time will tell how much that support will pay off, but one thing is certain: Mitchell’s leap to the next level should pay dividends for the Lady Tigers.
“The fact that I can go and play college football is a really big thing because it lets all the young kids know that they can do it too,” Mitchell said.
And that close bond with her teammates isn’t something to overlook, as it played a huge part in her decision to play Pratt.
“I had a lot of other options, but when I visited Pratt they had a really good team and a really good bond with each other,” Mitchell said. “What I was really looking for was another family because at Ardmore we have a really good family here. And that’s what I really want to bring to college as well.
Mitchell’s mentality proves she wasn’t ready to quit playing football. And it’s safe to say that Priddy helped her achieve that with some advice.
“I’ve told the girls before that there’s no such thing as playing in college,” Priddy said. “I played at Murray State and I thought that was the best time of my life. So I said, ‘If you’re never ready to hang up your boots, I suggest you upgrade to next.’ So to have a girl commit to it is super awesome, especially as talented as she is. I’m glad she is.