Three Williston athletes signed letters of intent to play sports at the college level on April 28 at an event in the Dodge Room of the Reed Campus Center. Michael Dereus ’16, who played football and ran track for two years, will attend Georgetown University. Kyle Doucette ’16 played basketball at Williston for two years and will attend LIU Post. Mark Wilson ’16 played football as a postgraduate and will attend Central Connecticut State University.
Michael Dereus played wide receiver for the Wildcats, and runs track. His football coach, Mark Conroy, praised both Dereus’ quickness at the game, and his character off the gridiron.
“Mike’s success on the field and in the classroom is a result of his dogged determination to take full advantage of his opportunities,” he said. “As a football player, Mike is blessed with exceptional natural gifts but what has allowed him to achieve at such a high level is his exceptional work ethic and desire to improve. Mike’s teachers and coaches all laud his outstanding work ethic and coach-ability.”
For Dereus, motivation to succeed came from the thrill of scoring a touchdown. “It feels like you are on top of the world,” he said. And success, indeed, arrived after he put in the time and effort. “Repetition is more important than pure ability,” he noted. His sister, Ruth Dereus, pointed to his determination, “Michael never allowed any barriers, whether it be on the field, in the classroom, or in his personal life, to distract him from his goals. I’ve seen the various transferable skills Michael acquired from the football field that he applied in life: determination, sportsmanship, teamwork, leadership, resilience, tenacity, and many more!”
Dereus recently set school records in both the 100- and 200-meter races, and for most touchdown receptions. He was named one of the top receivers in NEPSAC when he made the All-NEPSAC team this fall.
Kyle Doucette’s willingness to work hard at improving his game has brought him success on the basketball court. The center excels at defending the hoop—and he’s versatile, according to his coach, Michael Shelton.
“His ability to cover every position was vital to our success in the championship game,” Shelton said. “Offensively he is great around the basket and has improved his shooting over the last two years.”
Rich Doucette, Kyle’s father, added that his son is the “consummate team player. He’s never had a technical foul.” He added that since Kyle began playing the sport at age 9, he’s “absolutely loved basketball.” And at Williston, Kyle said, “I learned to push to my absolute best ability every play and never give up.”
Mark Wilson said football became a way for him to shake off the academic rigors of a postgraduate year. According to his mother, Sue Wilson, Mark has always had his “eye on the prize.” Since he came to Williston, she said, she’s seen his confidence and motivation grow.
“He has the passion and the will to go the distance,” she said. His coach, Mark Conroy, agreed. “He has great football instincts and could always be counted on to be one of our most consistent defensive playmakers,” Conroy said. “He loves football and plays the game with great passion.”
Congratulations, Mike, Kyle, and Mark!
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