Colin Diehm paid tribute to the Lone Star State on Wednesday, decked out in a white cowboy hat as he signed his letter of intent to play baseball at Texas Tech after he graduates this spring.
“We're going to see how it goes, but I'm definitely digging the hat,” the Carroll left-hander said when asked how he'll adjust to Texas. “It's pretty nice and I look pretty good in it.”
The 6-foot-7, 225-pound pitcher has played sparingly for the Chargers because of injuries, pitching 112/3 innings with 17 strikeouts during his first two seasons. He did not play at all during his junior season.
“I think usually the guys around me get pretty pumped up when I go up to the mound,” said Diehm, who is now healthy ahead of his senior season. “I”m excited to be coming out this spring with my guys, since I haven't played with them since my sophomore or freshman year.”
The Red Raiders were 46-20 last season. Texas Tech reached out based on the strength of Diehm's performance with his travel team.
“The pitching coach, coach (Matt) Gardner, got a hold of me; he's a great guy, and we really hit it off,” Diehm explained. “We talked about doing some hunting and stuff. We just jelled. ... It's definitely a great program. It's more of your hard-working, blue-collar atmosphere, so it was nice, more my personality.”
His classmate, Monroe Rayna Fruchey, a long-distance runner who was a key part of the Chargers' 2018 and 2019 cross country state titles, will also be heading west for college. Immediately after Diehm, she signed her letter of intent to run at the Air Force Academy, which is near Colorado Springs in the Rocky Mountains.
“I was looking at other colleges, and I kept thinking, what else is there to do?” Fruchey asked while explaining why she chose a service academy. “There's so much keeping you busy at the Air Force Academy, and we all do everything together. There's such a sense of community there, and I'm really excited to join in.”
Fruchey, who plans to study political science and foreign area studies with a focus on Asia, said her parents encouraged her to attend a college at a high elevation, which would give her an advantage over runners who train closer to sea level. The Air Force Academy is 7,258 feet above sea level.
Although no one in her immediate family has attended a service academy or joined the military, Fruchey said her parents were supportive and knew she could be successful at Air Force if she was committed to it.
“I've been there and I know what it's like, and I can just picture myself being there,” Fruchey said. “I think it will make me a better person.”
Bishop Dwenger: Molly Ream, Olivet Nazarene (basketball); Carissa Wiegman, Grace (basketball); Jed Downham, Anderson (baseball); Mike Herrold, Chandler Gilbert CC (baseball); Taya Dazey, Southern Indiana (volleyball); Delaney Hogan, Xavier (volleyball); Kaley Lyons, IU Kokomo (volleyball); Erin Strzeleck, Notre Dame (cross country and track); Laura Wright, Ball State (swimming)
Heritage: Katelyn Sebring, Indiana Tech (track)
Wawasee: Logan Adkins, Saint Francis (basketball)
Angola: Ashlyn Meyer, University of Indianapolis (volleyball)
Bellmont: Macy Montgomery, Indiana (softball)
Carroll: Colin Diehm, Texas Tech (baseball); Monroe Rayna Fruchey, Air Force Academy (cross country and track)
Columbia City: Bella Ross, Cedarville (softball)
Leo: Ashley Miller, Michigan State (softball); Aaliyah Andrews, Indiana (softball);
Heritage: Maggie Castleman, PFW (volleyball); Bree Dossen, Indiana Tech (basketball)
Homestead: Sydney Graber, Central Michigan (basketball); Rylie Parker, PFW (basketball); Julia Dvorak, Notre Dame (track and field); Keagan Stuckey, Grand Valley State (track and field); Jarred Neff, Grand Valley State (track and field); Gabby Torrez, Eastern Kentucky (soccer); Abby Adams, Northern Illinois (soccer)
South Side: Jaci Jones, Detroit Mercy (basketball)
Homestead: Lauren Moellering, Spring Arbor (soccer); Madison Barnhardt, University of the Cumberlands (soccer); Emily Wilcox, Eastern Illinois (volleyball)
Bishop Luers: Taylor Bransfield, Wright State (volleyball); Jessica Hartmus, Indiana Tech (lacrosse); Dori Javins, Indiana Tech (basketball); Madeleine Pape, IUPUI (golf); Lydia Reimbold, Bellarmine (basketball)
Carroll: Mya VanderHagen, Southern Methodist (swimmers); Veronica Lantz, Grand Valley State (swimming); Mallory Jackson, Wisconsin (swimming); Tristan DeWitt, Indiana (swimming)
Woodlan: Hallie Mason, Lansing CC (softball)
Blackhawk Christian: Julia Nagy, DePaul (volleyball)
Carroll: Izabell Estes, Cleary (softball); Olivia Sloffer, PFW (soccer); Gabby Siren, Bethel (soccer); Elizabeth Knoor, Siena Heights (soccer); Mallory Turnbow, Saint Francis (soccer); Kaitlynn Welker, Saint Francis (soccer)