Multi-sport athlete excels on the field and in the classroom

Excelling in two sports in a single season and being school salutatorian sounds like a daunting task for almost anyone. But for Callie Larson of Estancia, hard work on the field and in the classroom go hand-in-hand.

Larson was the starting pitcher for the Bears softball team, which made it to the 2018 state quarterfinals.

She also played setter on the volleyball team, which made it to the state semifinals last season; and Larson was a captain on the basketball team.

She was also eighth in the state at 3A pole vaulting (7’6”), for which she thanks coach Richard Walker since she  made only three meets.

“Our parents set expectations from a very young age,” Larson said. “If I’m going to start something, I do it to the best of my abilities.”

For the first three years of high school, her best meant the best GPA in her class. But she fell behind valedictorian Matthew Lindeman after he took a few summer classes.

Her father David Larson graduated at the top of his class but said he and wife Sherri only expect their kids to try their hardest. “There’s a time to praise a D and a time to yell at an A,” he said.

She earned $28,000 in scholarships, and said she got a lot of help with the Delilah Williams Scholarship essay from Estancia School Board member Elaine Darnell. The $2,600 for that scholarship comes from the PEO Sisterhood, supporting girls and women in education.

Receiving $22,400 spread out over four years from New Mexico State University was the biggest award for Callie Larsen, who also received the Hadley Honors Scholarship from NMSU.

But the recent grad said she was also very grateful for the $1,000 scholarships she received from both the N.M. Education Council and the Estancia Rotary Club. The new Bob Bell Memorial Scholarship and EMW Gas scholarships also earned Larson $500 each.