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Ridgewood’s Simpson signs with Tiffin

| May 1, 2019

Ridgewood High School senior Rachel Simpson, center, signed her letter of intent to play soccer at Tiffin University. She is pictured with her mom and dad Melinda and Darrell Simpson. Josie Sellers | Beacon

WEST LAFAYETTE – Playing soccer in college had been in the back of Rachel Simpson’s mind, but she wasn’t sure about it until visiting Tiffin University.

Simpson, a senior at Ridgewood High School, signed her letter of intent to play soccer for Tiffin on April 30. She celebrated the occasion in the school’s media center with family, friends and coaches.

“I’ve played soccer at least since I was 5,” Simpson said. “It’s my main thing. I play softball too, but it was always just an extra. I like soccer because I can take my anger out. It’s my stress reliever for whatever is happening in life.”

Simpson was the leading goal scorer for Ridgewood this year, but her favorite memory from high school soccer is being captain all four years.

“That meant everything to me,” Simpson said. “As a freshman the upperclassmen didn’t necessarily want to look up to me, but I just kept working hard and persevering.”

Her mother Melinda said Rachel was the first freshman captain in Ridgewood history.

“We are proud of her and all of her accomplishments and that she made the decision to do this,” Melinda said. “She wasn’t sure at first about playing soccer, but then it just kind of happened. I’ve enjoyed watching her grow as a person. She’s kind to everyone and they look up to her.”

Tim Tubbs, head soccer coach at RHS, said Rachel also was captain her seventh and eighth grade year when he coached her in junior high.

“Rachel does everything you ask her to do,” Tubbs said. “It doesn’t surprise me that she is going to play in college. She is talented and what she lacks in talent she makes up for with hard work. She was always doing extra running and calisthenics. She doesn’t question what you tell her to do and she doesn’t back down from a challenge.”

Rachel played mostly forward for Tubbs this year, but is very versatile.

“In junior high when we needed a goalie she played goalie,” Tubbs said. “When we needed a forward she played there. She can play all 11 spots on the field.”

He also complimented Simpson on her leadership skills.

“All the seniors are going to leave a hole for us to fill, but especially Rachel,” Tubbs said. “She always got everybody gathered up. Half the time I didn’t have to put the cones out for practice because she already had it done. She was there to work.”

Melinda said it was emotional watching Rachel sign her papers and her father Darrell added that he was very proud of her.

“I’m excited for her,” Darrell said. “They seem like really nice people up there (at Tiffin). I think she could have done alright playing softball or soccer in college, but her heart is in soccer.”

Melinda added that they will be at every Tiffin game that they can.

Rachel thanked her family, friends and all of her coaches for helping her get to this moment and advised her younger teammates to never give up.

“Keep going no matter how hard it gets,” she said.

Rachel plans to major in criminalistics at Tiffin.

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Category: High School, Sports

Josie Sellers

About the Author ()

I started my journalism career in 2002 with a daily newspaper chain. After various stops with them, I am happy to be back home! I graduated from Coshocton High School in 1998 and received a Bachelor of Arts in Communication in 2002 from Walsh University. I also earned several awards while working for daily papers, including being honored by Coshocton County’s veterans for the stories I wrote about them. I am honored and ready to once again shine a positive light on Coshocton County. I also am the proud mother of a little girl named Sophia!

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