FAIRMONT — Three Fairmont athletes on Tuesday signed letters of intent to continue their careers at Fayetteville State University.
Corry Addison and Kiara Page will play for the men’s and women’s basketball teams, respectively, and Sidney McKeithan will join the Broncos’ football program.
Addison averaged 11.6 points per game last season to help the Golden Tornadoes finish with a 29-2 record after reaching the regional semifinals. He said he is already focused on helping the Broncos earn a Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association championship next season.
“Every time I visited, I felt at home. It felt like a family,” Addison said.
Fairmont boys basketball head coach Montrell McNair said Addison took it upon himself to improve early in his career with the Golden Tornadoes.
“The summer after his sophomore season, he worked really hard to get himself into position to play point guard for us,” McNair said. “I saw the growth when he came back to start that season.”
The Broncos finished 10-19 last season, losing to Johnson C. Smith in the second round of the CIAA tournament. Corry’s older brother Juwan played basketball at Fayetteville State as well.
Page has been a three-sport athlete for Fairmont and girls basketball head coach Richard Mitchell said she has been a leader for the basketball team both on and off the court, and her presence will be missed this fall.
“Anyone who loves basketball like she does, anyone who wants to play all the time, can compete at the next level,” Mitchell said. “I knew she had the talent to go there. I knew she had the ability to go there. I’m just tickled to death that she’s going to the next level. She’s going to help somebody.”
Page was a key contributor in all aspects of the game for the Tornadoes last season. She averaged team-highs of 24 points, 14 rebounds and three assists per game in a campaign that that ended with a seven-game skid after she was sidelined with injuries.
She said the welcoming atmosphere at Fayetteville State, combined with strong academic and athletic programs, made her feel at home.
Page hopes her career with the Lady Broncos will help her achieve a major long-term goal.
“I actually had a dream to go to the WNBA before,” Page said. “I’m still pushing for it, but I’ve always wanted to play college basketball.”
The Tornadoes’ leading tackler with 102 last season, McKeithan drew praises from Fairmont head coach Kevin Inman.
“He’s a smart young man. He understands concepts on and off of the field,” Inman said. “He’s a well-rounded young man. He’s going to carry the things he learned in football and basketball.”
McKeithan tallied a team-high nine tackles for loss last season.
“I’ve gotten more physical,” McKeithan said. “The coaches prepare me for the next level every day. They make me work harder in the weight room and on the field.”
Inman said McKeithan has been a role model for younger athletes in the program.
“He took a lot of our underclassmen and took them under his wing,” Inman said. “Showed them how to do a lot of things. How to work hard and get the right amount of sleep. He’s been great for us.”
Reach Brandon Tester at 910-816-1989 or [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @BrandonTester.