A-K Valley Athletes of the Week: Knoch’s Kenzie Kerkan, Freeport’s Isaac Wetzel
Tuesday, September 24, 2019 | 5:49 PM
Report card: With a powerful jump serve, Kerkan had 60 service points in her last four matches for the two-time defending WPIAL Class AAA champion and top-ranked Knights (8-0). Kerkan has 90 service points and 101 digs as the team’s libero.
What’s been the key to your serving success?
I just focus on serving as aggressively and confidently as I can. That starts with firm hand contact. Some games, we dip up and down with our serves, and I just focus on helping the team any way I can.
How much do you work on your responsibilities in the back row?
I work on getting a clean pass up to our hitters and our setters a lot, and I think that really helps.
Do you have any college plans?
I’m verbally committed to play at La Roche. I was looking for a school that I can commute to. I really like the campus and (La Roche coach) Nicole (Bajuszik) is a great coach.
Do you have any superstitions or pregame routines?
If we have a home game, I usually come home after school and have a bowl of ice cream, which I know is probably not the healthiest decision. Then I’ll take a nap with my dogs to get all the stress of the match off of me. Then I’ll listen to music to pump myself up on the way there. For away games, I try to get all my homework done, eat a good meal that my parents thankfully provide me and then listen to music on the bus for stress relief.
Report Card: Freeport went 4-0 last week, and Wetzel played a pivotal role, scoring five goals, including a hat trick in a 5-0 win over Valley. Wetzel has burst onto the scene with 11 goals entering Tuesday’s game against Mt. Pleasant.
How did it feel to have a big week and contribute to four wins?
We had one of our best players (Hunter Hardin) out for three of the games, so we had to have some people step up to fill that gap, and I guess I was one of them.
What’s the feeling around the team after scoring four victories in one week?
After going through a long week, but winning them all, it puts us in a good spot in the section title race. We’re in position to try and win the title.
What’s been the toughest adjustment to playing at the varsity level?
The quality of opponents we play and the speed of play.
Do you have a favorite pregame meal?
I don’t have a preference, but I always eat a light meal, so I don’t get sick during the game.
Who is your favorite professional soccer player?
Cristiano Ronaldo and Harry Kane. I like the way they play and their mentality on the field.
Jerin Steele is a freelance writer
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