Trio of area athletes ‘put pen to paper’ to compete in college
Aspen High School senior Matthew Lambert probably didn’t mean it as a joke, but when the Penn commit finally “put pen to paper” Wednesday, it was certainly a time for laughs and good cheer.
“It feels awesome,” Lambert said. “I feel really good. I can focus on my tennis a lot more now. It’s the final stretch.”
Lambert was one of two AHS student-athletes to sign a letter of intent Wednesday inside the Skier Dome, the first day of the national signing period. Lambert is headed to play tennis for the University of Pennsylvania, while fellow AHS senior Kennidy Quist also is Ivy League-bound and will swim for Harvard University.
“There are a lot of brilliant kids in my grade and a lot of them are going incredible places. But to have another athlete that is going to another Ivy League school is incredibly exciting for both of us,” Quist said. “I’m really excited to immerse myself in all of those opportunities next year.”
Lambert, an Aspen native, made state as a freshman on the No. 2 doubles team but did not compete for the Skiers the next two seasons. As a sophomore he attended the Smith Stearns Tennis Academy in South Carolina and returned to Aspen his junior season but did not compete with AHS.
As a senior, he was part of one of the better AHS boys tennis teams in program history. Lambert, playing No. 1 singles, advanced to the Class 4A state quarterfinals.
Quist, who grew up swimming in Lake Michigan, moved to Aspen with her family before her freshman year and has since been one of the top swimmers in the state. She’s been an integral part of both the Aspen High girls swim team — which heads to the Western Slope League championship meet this weekend — and the Aspen Speedos swim club.
“I didn’t know if I would have that opportunity until about the end of my sophomore year, the beginning of my junior year, when I really saw those time drops,” Quist said of getting to swim in college. “It’s very exciting. It’s definitely a selective group of people (who attend Harvard). I couldn’t be more honored to be a part of it.”
Quist enjoys math and science, and plans to pursue engineering at Harvard. She also has an interest in business.
Lambert wants to pursue business and economics through Penn’s prestigious Wharton School.
Basalt’s Kyle Roberts signs for football
Also Wednesday, Basalt High School senior Kyle Roberts made it official and signed with Western State Colorado University in Gunnison, where he plans to be a wide receiver on the football team.
“I really like how their style of play was. Their motto is basically to outwork every other team with their strength and perseverance,” Roberts said. “Honestly, I didn’t think I could play college football. I didn’t think I had the skill for it. So signing with Western is really a bright side of my life.”
Roberts was a key piece of the Longhorns’ 7-3 season, which included their first league title in more than 30 years. According to MaxPreps, he led the team with 492 yards and 13 touchdowns receiving, while rushing for another 335 yards.
Western State, a member of the NCAA Division II Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference, finished fourth in the league last season, going 7-4 overall.
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The Aspen High School girls soccer team looks a lot different from the last time it played, with many new players and a new coaching staff. But winning has become part of the culture, and it’s so far, so good for the Skiers this spring.