PASO ROBLES — On Monday afternoon, inside of the Paso Robles High School Performing Arts Center, surrounded by friends, family and coaches, Kiara Mabien, Miranda Pasky and Codie Wilshusen committed to continuing their athletic careers at college universities.
The three girls join a list of eight other Bearcats who have committed to college universities this year. Mabien was the newest Bearcat, coming from a military home she attended two different high schools before coming to PRHS. Last season for the Bearcats Mabien ran track and was a key piece in the relay teams. Mabien has committed to keep running track at CSU San Bernardino.
Pasky grew up as a soccer player but switched to water polo just before starting high school and has developed into one of the most aggressive girls in the pool. Pasky was a big part of the Bearcats’ successful water polo season and also contributed to the swim team, she has committed to participate in both at Monmouth College (Illinois). Wilshusen has Cal Poly Mustang blood running through her veins — both her parents are alums and her father was a pole vaulter for the Mustangs. Wilshusen chose to stay close to home and will be competing for the Mustangs in the very near future. The Mustangs’ cross country and track and field teams will look familiar to Bearcat fans over the next four years with their addition of three Paso Bearcats this spring.
The girls will be joining Annie Meeder (Cal Poly, cross country and track), Trad Berti (Chico State, cross country and track), Luis Armendariz (Cal Poly, cross country), Christian Erickson (Sacramento State, football), Steven Schouten (Humbolt State, football), Gabrielle Morrison (Vanguard, volleyball), Madison Morrison (Westmont, volleyball), and Teagan Curren (CSU Long Beach, beach volleyball).
All three girls who signed on Monday spent their season excelling. As a pole vaulter, Wilshusen was a three-year CIF finalist and a two-year state qualifier. Wilshusen dominated the PAC-8 this season, finishing as the league champion and going on to finish 16th at the state meet.
Wilshusen also leaves behind a legacy in the form of a school record. There has never been a girls pole vaulter that has walked the hallways of Paso Robles High School better than Wilshusen — her record stands at 12’4”. Because of her outstanding performance in track in field the past two years, Wilshusen had options, but also had a really good reason for staying home.
“It was really just a gut instinct that I wanted to stay at home,” she said. “I really love living in the Paso Robles and the San Luis Obispo area and I’m really a momma’s girl so staying home was always something in the back of my mind.”
Although Mabien was only a Bearcat for a single season, her impact was still profound. Mabien grew up playing basketball and running track, but choose to just focus on her speed this year. Mabien ran the 400-meters and the 200-meters this season and excelled at both, she finished with second team all-conference honors in the 200 and helped the relay team win the PAC-8 league championship in the 4x400-meter relay. In only just a couple minutes of talking with Mabien it is clear how bright she is and her reason for choosing CSUSB proves it.
“What made me choose San Bernardino was probably that it is close to home, but not too close and I definitely think that the in-state tuition played a major role,” she said.
All three athletes honored on Monday were either all-league or all CIF performers, or both. Pasky earned all-league honorable mention for her work in the PAC-8 this season, and then due to her play in CIF earned CIF Southern Section 2nd Team honors. Out of all 11 seniors that have committed to continue their athletic career at the next level, Pasky is the only one leaving the state of California. Pasky will be heading for Illinois in the fall and will play water polo and swim.
“Well the coach saw my recruiting profile online and called me,” she said. “So I looked into the school a little bit and then fell in love, it’s so beautiful out there.” Pasky said on how she ended up committing to a school across the country, “I was able to go out and visit on spring break and it wasn’t as cold as you would think.”