February 27, 2024

7th Grader Skylar Colas Competing on MDCA Varsity Softball Team

2.6 min read| Published On: February 27th, 2024|

By Kyle Coppola

7th Grader Skylar Colas Competing on MDCA Varsity Softball Team

2.6 min read| Published On: February 27th, 2024|

Skylar Colas stands out as a middle schooler with a passion for softball, often playing alongside student-athletes six years her senior. Despite her age, Skylar is one of the most promising young athletes in Lake County, making her a standout seventh-grader to watch.

Skylar’s love for softball took root six years ago, inspired by her mother Lauren’s achievements at MDCA, back when the school was known as Mount Dora Bible (MDB). Lauren’s three All-State recognitions and four-time Ace of the Year title in softball, coupled with her basketball prowess, solidified her place in MDCA’s sports history. The banners at MDCA proudly display Lauren’s numerous accolades.

Mount Dora Bible, now known as Mount Dora Christian Academy, has evolved significantly since Lauren’s time spent at the program in 2001. Skylar, following in her mother’s footsteps, promises to be a notable player for years to come. Her impressive performance in the recent summer season, where she recorded 50 strikeouts, hints at her potential. Skylar played for the Florida Storm which is a travel softball program based out of Orlando. We also are praying for the Colas family as Lauren is currently fighting for her life in the hospital due to recent medical complications.

Skylar shares her enthusiasm for MDCA, expressing, “I love playing for MDCA. It’s been fun playing at the high school level, and I have been learning so much. MDCA is such a welcoming environment.” Despite being a sixth-grader, Skylar pitched in several varsity softball games, facing off against some impressive high school talent and players who are much older than her. In that season, she struck out 22 batters and yielded only 27 hits in 118 batters faced—commendable numbers for a young player. With senior Wynter Craft’s graduation, there’s a void at the pitcher position, and Skylar Colas, along with Katie Bayly, emerges as a strong contender to fill that role for the Bulldogs.

Being one of the few underclassmen on the roster can be intimidating, but MDCA strives to make athletes of all grade levels feel welcomed. Athletic Director Megan Ziegelhofer ensures students’ well-being mentally and physically, utilizing the advantage MDCA offers—allowing middle school students to compete at the high school level when deemed appropriate. She also gives out the best hugs and her players all appreciate the warm love and embraces she gives them especially if it’s been a rough day.

Skylar’s father, Stive, remarks on her continuous improvement, saying, “It’s so great to see her excel as her skills continue to improve.” Skylar, a smart student with a 4.0 GPA, not only excels on the field but also in her studies. Stive acknowledges the impact of Skylar observing and playing with older kids, emphasizing the positive influence on her learning experience. “I think for her to get the experience to play at the High School level at this age is helping her mature. She’s learning a lot from not only coach Bayly but the upperclassman, some of whom have been in her shoes as a middle school athlete playing on at the high school level.” said Stive.

Skylar often looks up at the rafters adorned with her mother’s accomplishments at MDCA. These banners  fuel her aspirations to perhaps break some of those records one day. Lauren, who won a State Championship on the MDCA softball team, inspires Skylar to aim for similar heights in the coming years.

Skylar shares her favorite part about MDCA, highlighting the welcoming atmosphere. She is one of three middle school students listed on the roster, alongside sixth graders Alex Bacigalupi and Chloe Ragsdale. However, the team’s camaraderie extends beyond the roster, with players like sophomore Katie Bayly and Allie Hayden having contributed to the team for several years as middle school students as well. They learned from players in front of them, so the team has a lot of chemistry because of how unique and talented some of these players are. The MDCA community’s support and Skylar’s drive exemplify the school’s commitment to nurturing both academic and athletic success.

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About the Author: Kyle Coppola

Kyle Coppola was born in Newton, Massachusetts and received his Bachelor of Fine Arts in Communications from Curry College in 2016. After traveling to Florida on a family vacation, he decided he could not get enough of the warm weather and made the move from snowy Massachusetts to central Florida 8 years ago.

For the last decade Kyle has gained valuable experience in social media content creation, marketing and sales, writing, video production, sports announcing and even broadcasting for local radio stations, such as FM 102.9 in The Villages and FM 91.5 in Massachusetts. Every year he volunteers at The Villages Charter High School as a play-by-play sports announcer for the football games as well as a public address announcer for the basketball games, including the annual Battle at The Villages Tournament.

Outside the office Kyle is a husband and father to two beautiful girls along with their cat. In his spare time he likes to spend time with his family, travel, play golf and swim. He is also a huge sports junkie and even bigger motorsports fan and loves to attend racing events when he can.

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