Robert Perea, The Fernley Reporter
Two 2021 Fernley High School graduates will be continuing their athletic careers in college.
Jackson Chapin has accepted a scholarship to study and wrestle at Morningside College in Sioux City, Iowa, while David Sisneros has accepted a scholarship to play football and study at the University of LaVerne in La Verne, Calif.
Chapin and Sisneros are both receiving academic scholarships, and announced their college plans at a signing ceremony at Fernley High School on May 26.
Sisneros said he had been considering another school until La Verne coaches contacted him a couple weeks prior to his college announcement. He said the scholarship offer and his acceptance came together quickly. La Verne coaches became aware of him and began recruiting him after Fernley coaches sent them film.
Sisneros said he’s been wanting to play in college since he began playing football at 7 years old.
“It’s a dream come true after all that,” he said.
Sisneros plans to major in kinesiology and hopes to become a trainer. On the football field, he was recruited to play defensive end. He said he is working in the weight room this summer trying to get his weight up to 225 pounds, from his current 219, by the start of his freshman season.
(My goal) is to try to start right off the bat and show that I belong there,” he said.
La Verne competes in the NCAA Division III Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference
The Leopards didn’t compete in the 2020 season because of Covid-19, but were 4-6 overall and 3-4 in conference play in 2019.
“Their coaches are really great at teaching their players, even though they know what they’re doing, but they can teach them more,” Sisneros said.
Chapin said Morningside was the first school that reached out to him, and once he visited the school, he knew that’s where he wanted to go and didn’t seriously consider anywhere else.
“The coach called me and we had a good relationship right away,” Chapin said. “I knew I wanted to go to Morningside.”
Chapin missed out on competing during his senior season because the NIAA didn’t conduct winter sports during the Covid-19 pandemic, but Chapin said that turned out to his benefit. With no season and no team practices, he began working out with Josh Nolan of Silver State Academy and actually wrestled every day.
“When Covid happened, I would drive to coach’s house,” Chapin said. “Even though we didn’t have a season this year, I’m happy this is how it turned out. I would never been as good as I am.”
Chapin started wrestling in fifth grade, and during his junior season last year, decided to quit football to focus on wrestling. He wound up finishing second in the State Tournament that season, and that’s when he met Nolan. Then the Covid-19 pandemic hit right after that season.
Morningside competes in the NAIA Great Plains Athletic Conference, and had four wrestlers qualify last season for the national championship tournament, including a sophomore who was named an All-American. Chapin said he doesn’t know if he will have a chance at a spot in the starting lineup right away, but said the coaches want him to get bigger, faster and stronger. He currently weights about 185 pounds.
“They would love me around 200 and if I was a little chubby, I could cut down to 184 or 197,” he said.
Academically, Chapin said he is considering majoring in business, but hasn’t decided for sure.
“Of course I want to further my academic career, but I’m more excited for my athletic career,” he said. “One day I’m sure I’m going to be a coach. I’m going to use that wrestling knowledge that I get from my coaches.”