WEST UNION - Doddridge County senior Sarah Ferguson will be looking to cement her place in Bulldog history this spring as she hopes to win her fourth straight state high hurdles title. Ferguson, who also carries a 4.0 GPA in the classroom, was hoping her track and field achievements and academic performance would not go unnoticed by West Virginia University.
"I have been a WVU fan as long as I can remember," said Ferguson. "I really wanted to run for the Mountaineers and thought I would be a good fit but when I didn't hear back from the track coaches I was surprised."
"Sarah was really down on herself when WVU didn't call her back," said father Shane Ferguson, "but as she has done so many times before, she picked herself up and began to look elsewhere."
Doddridge County’s Sarah Ferguson signs a national letter of intent to run track and field at Marshall University. Ferguson carries a 4.0 GPA.
The track star still has trouble believing what happened next. Her mother suggested to her that she look at Marshall and Ferguson didn't think she would stack up to the girls but she filled out a track survey anyway and submitted it.
"Marshall wasn't even on my radar," said Ferguson, "It is not that I disliked Marshall, it is just I hadn't thought about going to Huntington."
"Next thing we know, she gets a call from Marshall track coach, Jeff Small, telling her they would love for her to attend Marshall," said mother Lora Ferguson, "so that is where she signed."
Ferguson was very excited and started making changes to her wardrobe, from WVU old gold and blue to Marshall green and white.
"I have a lot of WVU stuff and I can't really wear that down in Huntington," said Ferguson.
Before Ferguson gets to Marshall, she will be running in four events for the Bulldogs this season. In addition to the high hurdles, Ferguson will be long jumping and running in the 300 hurdles with a fourth event yet to be determined.
"I am excited to get this season underway," Ferguson said. "This season is going to be exciting, not just because of the high hurdles but because we have a chance to win a state championship."
"Sarah is just special," said Doddridge girls track coach Craig Kellar, "She has a great attitude and work ethic, which I wish all of my athletes had."
Kellar thinks that Marshall and Ferguson are a perfect fit.
Joining Ferguson at Marshall in 2015 will be Parkersburg High's Rachel Morris as well as fellow Class A track star, Andrea Chidester of Williamstown.
"I was really surprised when I arrived in Huntington for my visit,'' said Ferguson. "The Marshall coaches had told me someone else from a Class A school had committed but I didn't know it was her (Andrea) until the visit."
Chidester and Ferguson have become friends throughout their time in high school and will be rooming together during the upcoming school year.