Northern Bear Jasmine Kohl commits to Lake Forest College as two-sport athlete

Photo submitted by Shawn Kohl Jasmine Kohl has signed with the Lake Forest College Foresters, where she will compete as a two-sport athlete in the fall.

It has taken more than a year, but Jasmine Kohl has finally committed to a school in the USA for the fall of 2023.

Kohl will be attending Lake Forest College in Lake Forest, Illinois this fall to play softball and hockey. Lake Forest College is located just 25 miles northeast of Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport.

Kohl originally relocated to Prince Albert from her hometown of Moose Jaw in the fall of 2020 to join the Northern Bears program.

She says the experience of moving away from home was invaluable and she looks forward to making many new connections during her studies.

“What I look forward to the most is meeting new people and just being in a new place. Moving from Moose Jaw wasn’t very far, but moving and meeting new people was probably one of the best things I’ve had in my life so far. I think going there with so many more people and so many more things related to sports and activities is going to open my mind to a whole range of new things and people and it’s going to be great. That’s probably what I’m looking forward to the most.”

At the time of publication, Kohl has 10 goals and 15 assists in 59 career games as a North Bear.

She says her time with the Bears has helped her develop as a hockey player but also as an escape from whatever is going on regarding the pandemic.

“I moved here in my first year. I was a beginner. I was new in town, new neighborhoods, and it was a COVID year. Things didn’t always go great but we had practices and it was consistent and we kept going and we kept playing. I felt like hockey was my escape from everything else that was going around. That was probably one of my big turning points in my hockey career. The year after that, up until this year, the coaches have made everyone very welcome and I feel like my game has gotten a lot better as a result.”

Several schools have shown interest in Jasmine Kohl over the past year and a half. Shawn Kohl, Jasmine’s father, says there was a lot of information to digest in the recruitment process.

“There were a lot of good programs and a lot of good coaches, a lot of good schools. As you start to get to know them and you develop personal relationships with the trainers and the programs themselves and you see how much they want you to be part of their programs and they become good friends with your family and also with Jasmine. It’s difficult when you have to make a decision and you have to tell a lot of people that you really like that you have to say no to them. That makes the process a little more difficult, but there were so many schools and so many choices that just trying to navigate through them all was overwhelming at times.”

The Lake Forest College Foresters compete at the NCAA Division III level in both women’s hockey and softball.

The Softball Foresters finished the 2022 Midwest Conference with a record of 15-1 in conference play and a 24-15 record overall.

The women’s ice hockey program at Lake Forest College has an 8-4-2 record in conference play during the 2022-2023 season.

There were many factors the Kohl family looked at before Jasmine committed.

“When we researched the schools, the programs, the divisions they would play in, the level of competition, the educational factor, the location, the ability to travel there with him as far as international airports, and considering including financial scholarships, there were really a lot of factors that we looked into thoroughly.” Shawn says. “In the end, Jasmine really liked the program when it came to softball and hockey. She really liked the education side and the research we did indicated that it was a very highly rated school. So when you consider all the factors, that was the reason behind the decision for her.”

Kohl plans to pursue a psychology degree from Lake Forest College with her long-term career goal of becoming a psychiatrist.

Since moving to Prince Albert, she has been a member of the Global Sports Academy at Carlton Comprehensive High School. She gives credit to her coach at Global Sports Academy, Doan Smith, for helping her get to the next level.

“Doan Smith has been working with me for two years now and he’s probably been one of the best coaches I’ve had in my life because he knows how to push your limits and still have fun, which is what made me want to do that love sport even more.”

Jasmine Kohl is most often seen on the softball diamond when she is not shortstop or pitching for her team.

She says her determination is a strength of her game in both hockey and softball.

“You see it on the ice when you fight in the turns or run down the ice as hard as I can and make the smart plays. In softball, you’re more likely to see it, dive catch and spin, throw to first base on my knees, or I’m down. I’m two shots down and I’m the last batter and I have this rage in me that I have to put the ball in play and I’ll do anything to put that ball in play.”

It’s a wide range of emotions for Shawn Kohl, who says he’s proud to see Jasmine compete at the next level.

“Excitement, a lot of pride to know that she put in so much hard work and fought her way through many obstacles. It still takes great pride in their ability to fight their way through those things.

Jasmine’s parents, Tammy and Shawn, are tasked with keeping up with both of their sports while she is with the Foresters. Shawn says following just two sports is a lot less than what they’re used to.

“Jasmine is one of those kids who just can’t sit around doing nothing. She has always played several sports. She was exceptional at volleyball. She was good at basketball. She played some school sport. In athletics and ice hockey she was always at the top. So growing up with her and going through that process and becoming that kind of athlete and student. It’s always been a balancing act and it’s always been very difficult in our schedules, so I’m looking forward to following just two teams instead of eight. It will probably actually be a bit easier for us.”

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