With schools continuing to be closed for the rest of the school year, Sharyland High School ensured that one of its top golfers was still celebrated.
Maialen “M” Erana, a senior on the Sharyland High School Women’s Golf Team, signed a letter of intent Tuesday to continue playing golf at Concordia University, an NCAA Division III college in the American Southwest Conference, in Austin.
“There were a lot of factors but it being away from home but close enough to come back to visit helped,” Erana said of her decision to attend Concordia. “Their program was the best fit for me. They have a good, competitive team and I wanted to be in a competitive area to continue growing as an athlete.”
According to SHSA Athletic Coordinator Ron Adame, Erana’s signing-held at the McAllen Country Club as a result of all schools in the state being closed since spring break as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic-was the first the school has done outside of campus.
Erana, a four- year letterman who was an individual regional qualifier during her freshman year, regularly practices at the McAllen Country Club.
“I’ve been playing golf for a really long time. I like how it’s a team and individual sport where you challenge yourself but work with a team,” Erana said. “I think a lot of it is practice and putting in the work to be self-disciplined to have that drive for it.”
Throughout high school, Erana has had five top 10 varsity finishes, made 3rd team all-district her sophomore year, 2nd team all-district her junior year and 1st team all-district her senior year.
She will be graduating from SHS in the top 16 percent of her class.
“She’s a hard worker, very self-motivated and loves to be out on the golf course and knows what it takes to practice to her fullest,” SHS Head Women’s Golf Coach Ashley Garza said of Erana. “She’s very dedicated and is a very good leader, she really loves the sport and wants to be the best she can be.”
Garza said she was happy Erana was getting an athletic signing to commemorate her athletic achievements.
“I’m glad she’s getting a signing, everyone deserves their own recognition, you just need to do what you need to do to overcome whatever challenges you face,” Garza said.
Erana, who plans to study psychology at Concordia University to become a child life specialist, thanked those who came to her signing.
“I’m fortunate to have this, I believe things happen for a reason and though we’re not able to be at school, I still have this support system who have shown how much they support me by being here and I appreciate it,” Erana said. “I was shocked when the school never reopened and thought I wasn’t going to have a proper signing so I’m excited for this. It hasn’t sunk in yet that I am graduating and going to college.”