A-K Valley Athletes of the Week: Knoch’s Kenzie Kerkan, Freeport’s Isaac Wetzel

Tuesday, September 24, 2019 | 5:49 PM

Kenzie Kerkan

Class: Senior

School: Knoch

Sport: Volleyball

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.

What’s it going to take for this group to close out their careers with a third WPIAL championship?

We definitely have a target on our back, and we try to play each game as sound as we can. We try to stay happy and keep our confidence up.

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.

What flavors of ice cream do you have?

I like to get the cartons that mix vanilla and chocolate, and I get a little bit of each every time. I always have to have whipped cream on it too, of course.

What’s your favorite school subject?

My favorite right now is probably anatomy. Last year, I took psychology and sociology, and I loved those classes.

Who are your best friends on the team?

Hannah Rowe, Mykenzie Werner and Madison Raypush.

What’s your favorite TV show?


What’s something interesting that people may not know about you?

I have a lot of pets. I have two horses (Vic and Diesel), three dogs (Marley, Minnie and Molly), two cats (Max and Cher), ducks, chickens and we recently hatched some baby turtles.

Isaac Wetzel 

Class: Freshman

School: Freeport

Sport: Soccer

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.

What’s your favorite professional soccer team?

Tottenham Hotspur F.C.

What’s your favorite school subject?

Math. I like problem solving.

Who are your best friends on the team?

Garrett Risch, Justin Kriess, and Luke Heider

Do you have a favorite movie?

The Fate of the Furious

Do you have a hobby outside of soccer?

I like to golf in my spare time.

Jerin Steele is a freelance writer

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