On Monday, Nov. 18, 2019, Upper Dublin senior Jackie Vargas was recognized for committing to continue her basketball career at Lehigh University. To view photos, please visit the Photo Gallery.
Jackie Vargas – Lehigh University (Basketball)
Major: Possibly Computer Science
Final list of colleges: Lehigh, Cornell, St. Joseph’s
Reasons for choosing Lehigh: “Lehigh offers a top-notch education and is really comparable to Ivy without the cost. Also, the basketball is really good. They’re doing really well in the Patriot League.”
What was the progression that led you to competing in basketball at the collegiate level? “When I was younger, I didn’t really know basketball was a thing to play in college. I guess it really started when I was in seventh grade and I transferred to the Belles AAU team. They’ve had a lot of girls go through their organization and play in college. I think that was the first year I was like, ‘I think this could actually happen in a couple of years.’”
Coach Morgan Funsten says: “Jackie has been on our radar since she was in sixth grade. She’s always been blessed with being very tall. What you’ll soon learn if you observe her or coach her is how skilled she is. She can do every facet of the game, she’s a very smart kid, she works really hard, she’s very talented in academics as well, and she uses her smarts on the court. I think that Lehigh is a perfect fit for her with such a priority placed on academics, and it’s close. Just knowing Jackie as a student, I thought it was going to come down to an Ivy League school or a school similar to an Ivy League school, and that’s what she’s getting in Lehigh.
“She worked really hard to get to where she is on the basketball court, and she was instrumental in everything we did as a program and has been for the past four years. Her unselfishness allows her to be such a complete player, and it allows the strengths of the other girls in our program to come out. When you’re as talented and skilled as Jackie is, you can easily take 60-70 percent of our shots. You see that a lot of times in other programs, and I think Jackie has been okay not putting up 20 shots a game and always doing what’s best for the team. If we needed her to take more shots to be successful as a team, she was willing to do that, and she really became a complete player. I tried not to take her for granted because I had her for four years. If anybody around here took her for granted, they’re going to find out real quick next year.”
Favorite food: Anything Pasta
Favorite movie: Tangled
Favorite artist: Shawn Mendes
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