WC’s Wamsley taking 4.1 GPA, soccer skills to Centenary College

Published 9:28 am Monday, March 28, 2016

In a few months, Max Wamsley will officially become one of the thousands of student-athletes in the NCAA ranks.

The emphasis, he makes clear, is on “student.”

Wamsley, a senior soccer player for Warren Central, has accepted an offer to play at Centenary College in Shreveport. Centenary is a Division III program that does not offer athletic scholarships, but Wamsley said he’s received several academic-based scholarships that will require him to stay sharp both in the classroom and on the field.

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“I know school is going to be really hard. I have to maintain a 3.0 (GPA) to keep my scholarship, and biology is a really hard major,” Wamsley said. “The main thing I’m worried about is academics, because if I don’t maintain it I can’t afford to go to school.”

Studying hard and maintaining a strong Grade Point Average shouldn’t be a problem for Wamsley. He has a 4.1 weighted GPA at Warren Central and currently ranks in the top 15 in the school’s Class of 2016. He intends to major in biotechnology and minor in computer science at Centenary.

Wamsley’s final college choice came down to Centenary or Louisiana Tech. He said he picked Centenary not just because they offered him the chance to play soccer, but because of the school’s academic reputation.

“More for school. It’s just a bonus to play soccer,” said Wamsley, a midfielder who had 21 goals and 16 assists for Warren Central in four seasons as a varsity starter.

Centenary also appealed to Wamsley on the soccer side, although for a bit of an unusual reason. The Gents finished 4-15 last season and have won a total of 10 games over the past three years. They haven’t had a winning season since 2011-12. Wamsley will be one of 10 freshmen on next year’s team.

All of that was something he wanted to be a part of, he said. Helping a program rebuild and grow from nothing sounded fun, and it helped that he enjoyed being around his future teammates when he took a campus visit.

“They’re starting from scratch, which is pretty exciting,” he said. “It appeals to me. I’d rather go where nobody else has gone before. I plan on going there to get my bachelor’s, and then to a bigger school like Louisiana Tech or LSU for my master’s.”

For Wamsley, though, it always comes back to school. He had another athletic offer, from Hendrix College in Conway, Ark., to run track and play soccer. Wamsley is also a distance runner for Warren Central’s track team.

Centenary, though, offered the best of both worlds and he couldn’t be happier with his choice.

“I’ve played soccer all my life and wanted to keep playing,” he said. “I liked the coaches a lot and hung out with the team for a day or two, and they were all great guys. But I really like the school itself. It’s a smaller school in a big city, and that’s what I like. I really am excited about it.”

About Ernest Bowker

Ernest Bowker is The Vicksburg Post's sports editor. He has been a member of The Vicksburg Post's sports staff since 1998, making him one of the longest-tenured reporters in the paper's 140-year history. The New Jersey native is a graduate of LSU. In his career, he has won more than 50 awards from the Mississippi Press Association and Associated Press for his coverage of local sports in Vicksburg.

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