Four of the five Catawba Ridge athletes along with their coaches and school’s athletic director Rick Lewis pose for pictures on National Signing Day.

Five soccer players made up the first ever signing class for Catawba Ridge Copperheads on National Signing Day Wednesday.

Three boys and two girls made the first signing class, as both girls decided to attend Lander University and two of the three boys will be going to USC Lancaster. The one individual who missed signing day because he was in quarantine was Dylan Dority, who will be attending Brevard College.

Out of the five signees, Dority was the first athlete ever to commit to a college sport for Catawba Ridge. Dority has been playing soccer since he was 4-years-old and said he picked Brevard over Stetson University and Flagler College, both in Florida, because of what the campus had to offer.

“I went to visit the area and tour the campus,” he said, in a phone interview. “It is a beautiful area and campus. I can also contend for a starting position as a freshman.”

Dalton Bailey and Antonio Pantigoso will be heading to Lancaster, while Emma Sexton and Maren White will be going to Lander University. For all five seniors and for the school it was a history making moment, despite the socially distanced signing held in The Arena, the school’s main gym.

“It has been a long time coming,” said Copperheads’ athletic director Rick Lewis. “What a great accomplishment to see them go to the next level.”

Bailey has been playing soccer since he was 3-years-old and wasn’t sure about coming to Catawba Ridge, but said he has since fell in love with it.

“Coming over here I was hesitant because it was a new school,” he said. “I am excited to enjoy this coming year of soccer.”

Pantigoso was just as excited about his senior season, but was also looking forward to college.

“I get to make new friends, see new faces and have new coaches,” he said. “I am ready to go.”

Both Sexton and White wanted to go to Lander together and will be roommates. Sexton has been playing soccer since she was 4-years-old and liked Lander because of its proximity to home.

“I really liked the coaching staff and the players there, and I can stay close to home,” she said.

This is Sexton’s first year playing with Catawba Ridge soccer program, getting noticed through playing club soccer.

White, who was the first ever captain for the girls’ soccer team, has been involved in the sport since she was 5-years-old. This will be her second year with the Copperheads. For White, she said Lander gives her some familiarity that she was looking for. 

“I liked the coach and I know other people there,” she said. “The school is nice.”

Mac Banks:, @fortprep