ROME — NEB will be sending two graduates off to further their educations and further their athletic careers come next year.

Ian Wilbur will be playing baseball at Mansfield University while Naomi Blythe will play women’s soccer at Corning Community College.

“I think it’s a good decision,” Wilbur said about his choice. “I see that as my best option if I want to continue my career in baseball and also as a student in college. I think it’s going to be a good four years playing for the team.”

Wilbur was on Mansfield’s radar early due to his time on the travel ball circuit.

“A while ago coach (Harry) Hillson, the former head coach there, kept trying to reach out to me,” explained Wilbur. “I was still not sure what I wanted to do in college. Then just last year coach (Andrew) Chalot, the new coach, he asked me about coming down to a visit and we got talking. He just seemed like a really good guy so I thought it would be a really good team to play for.”

Wilbur likes the fact that Mansfield is just one county over and can’t wait to start.

“It will be a nice place to go to college.”

Blythe will just be up Route 15 in Corning.

“It’s honestly nerve racking,” she said about making her decision. “I’m really excited but I know it’s going to be challenging. I just can’t wait to experience it.”

Corning wasn’t the only school on her list.

“It was between a couple different schools but when I went and visited Corning it just kind of clicked,” she explained. “I knew it was the one I wanted.”

She, too, isn’t too far away and is excited to be able to have her family come watch her games.

“Family is everything to me,” said Blythe. “I’m really excited.”