Steamboat Springs It's been her dream since she was in eighth grade, and on Wednesday, Steamboat Springs High School senior Nikki Garth signed the letter to make her vision a reality.
"Coach Dudley took us on a soccer trip when I was in junior high, and I wanted to go to college in California ever since," Garth said.
Garth put her commitment in ink Wednesday when she signed a letter of intent to play soccer for the University of California at Riverside.
"I applied at colleges in California and Florida, but this was my first choice," Garth said.
Sailors head coach Rob Bohlmann said the fact that Garth signed with a Division I school says a lot about her as an individual.
"Nikki is a great role model for all the girls in our program," Bohlmann said. "It shows that a girl from a small soccer town like ours can make it to this level."
Bohlmann said Garth is a great example of how far hard work and dedication can take a player. She proves there is no reason that girls from Steamboat shouldn't go on to play at the college level whether that's in Division I, II or III, he said.
Garth was named to the all-conference team all three years and plans on making another run at post-season honors when the season returns in April. The past two years she has been one of her team's top scorers. She is also near the top of the list when it comes to assists.
Garth is relieved to know where she will be going to college next fall, but said she is looking at her senior year as the start of her conditioning for college. She will report to a preseason camp in August, but was unsure of any other details a this point.