Softball: Seabrook's Mattison
commits to University of Rhode Island
SEABROOK - While many student-athletes see scholarships as badges of validation or a reward for time invested, Jocelyn Mattison
sees it as a chance to pay back her
mother for all of her
support over the years.
Mattison, who plays softball for Winnacunnet High School, has verbally committed to play for the University of Rhode Island.
That commitment comes with a large financial scholarship as well.
It isn't a full ride, but Mattison
will have a scholarship for close to 75 percent of her
Although the scholarship is a reward for her
years of hard work, it is much more than that to Mattison
"The best part is that it is a way to pay my mother back for everything she's
done for me," Mattison
is a single mother, and she
has given up so much to pay for lessons, bats and things like that, to go here, there and everywhere for me.
It will be nice to pay her
back and relieve some of that burden (of paying for college) for her
Winnacunnet softball coach Dennis Bruce said Mattison's mother, Sue Hernandez, has been a big supporter of Jocelyn and the Seacoast Breakers youth softball program.
"(Jocelyn's) mother helped her a ton," Bruce said.
realizes what her
mother has done for her
, and she
sees this opportunity as a way to pay her
mother back for all of her
"It's really important because she's
the one who's always been there for me," Mattison
is glad the extra work she
put in over the years has paid off with the opportunity to play at URI
"Giving up Friday nights and Saturday mornings to practice and work on my game, people always said it would be worth it," she
"Now this is proof that it was worth it.
All the time that I put in while my friends were out doing other things is paying off."
Bruce has coached Mattison
for several years as a coach for the Seacoast Breakers program, and last year at Winnacunnet
(she played for St. Thomas her freshman and sophomore year).
Mattison said one of her proudest moments was being a member of a state championship team at St. Thomas her freshman year, but she made the move to Winnacunnet last season so she could face better pitching on a regular basis, and improve her game.
was ready to make that leap to URI
this past summer when she
played at the Golden Nationals competition.
"I was playing there with girls who are going to Pac-10 schools, and Florida, and Alabama, and all these great schools, and I realized I could play with those girls," she
"That really opened my eyes."
knew that URI
was the best choice for her
from the moment she
arrived on campus.
really likes Coach Erin Layton, and enjoyed meeting all of her
future teammates as well.
has already set some goals for her
time at URI
"I want to become a better player, of course," she
said the message she
would like to leave to younger players who might aspire to reach the Division I level is to work hard, and know the work will pay off.
"The effort people put forth really makes a difference," she