Westmoreland high school athletes of the week for the week ending March 3, 2024: Kendall Berger and David Mutter

Saturday, March 2, 2024 | 6:46 PM

Kendall Berger

School: Norwin

Class: Junior

Sport: Basketball

Claim to fame: Berger helped lead Norwin to the WPIAL Class 6A championship with an impressive performance in the semifinals.

She scored 18 of her game and playoff career-high 22 points in the second half as Norwin pulled away for a 63-47 victory over Chartiers Valley at Peters Township. She added 10 points in a 56-41 victory over North Allegheny in the WPIAL title game at Petersen Events Center.

What has this playoff run been like for you?

The playoff run has been insightful, motivating and encouraging. I think we all are really enjoying ourselves, but we have to make sure we don’t become satisfied.

What would winning WPIAL and PIAA championships mean to the program?

It would mean a ton for the program but even more to us as a team. Obviously, the seniors leave after this season, and it’s important that everyone realizes this is the last time we will ever play together and that motivates us more than anything else.

Did you follow the 2015 and ‘16 teams on their title runs?

I did a little bit. I was still young and playing tons of other sports at that point in my life. Had I been a little bit older I think I would’ve loved to have followed that team more closely.

What is this Norwin team’s trademark characteristic?

Our defense, our grit. We will always fight for 50/50 balls and dive on the floor. We take lots of pride in playing good defense and try to continue that every game.

What does it take to be a member of the Norwin girls basketball team?

Dedication, perseverance. It is not easy, waking up early on the weekends for practices. Having to practice on Christmas break and more, but in the long run, a championship is so rewarding.

You wore No. 2 but now wear No. 10. Why the switch?

No. 2 was a (size) small, and I put on weight over the summer and AAU season and its didn’t fit any more. If I could still wear No. 2 I would but it didn’t fit anymore.

Before I play a game, I must ______.


You have a way of getting to the basket. What have you worked on most in your game?

I’ve tried to rely less on foul calls and just try my hardest to finish despite whether it’s a foul or not.

Who is the most competitive player on the team? The toughest? The smartest? The funniest?

Toughest: Bailey (Snowberger). Smartest: Lauren (Palangio). Funniest: Kendall (Williams).

What style of shoes do you wear on the court?

Right now I wear Brianna Stewarts. I have been wearing them through AAU and didn’t want to have to break in a new pair for the Norwin season.

Who is your idol?

Paige Bueckers.

Why has the song, “Unwritten” resonated with the team?

The song was in a movie that some of the girls had seen, and since then it’s been a practice song and everyone loves it.

Are you good at any other sports?

I was good at track freshman year but didn’t run last year because of my ankle injury. I am thinking about doing it this year.

Do you have any pets? What are their names?

I have a cat. His name is Ziggy. Ziggy and I are super close. He’s my favorite family member.

Any fun hobbies?

Hang out with friends. Go to Applebee’s.

What concerts do you want to see this year?

I’m seeing Chris Stapleton and Hozier. I’ve seen Crowder and Lauren Daigle in the past.

What or who inspires you to be great?

My grandma. She has dementia and can’t come to see my games.

People would be surprised to know I _____.

Write with my left hand.

David Mutter

School: Mt. Pleasant

Class: Junior

Sport: Swimming

Claim to fame: Mutter had a busy and productive Thursday at the WPIAL Class 2A swimming championships. He won the 100 butterfly, finished second in the 200 freestyle and was on the record-setting 200 medley relay team with Logan Snively, Joseph Gardner and Gunner Probst. He also broke his friend’s WPIAL record in the butterfly.

What did it mean to win a WPIAL title and break a record?

My goal was swim my test time. Winning was the cherry on top. I also broke my friend, Henry Miller’s, record. He told me to break it, and I did.

What was more exciting, the title or the record?

At this time, they are pretty equal.

When did you start swimming?

It was seven or eight years ago. I used to play football, basketball, baseball and soccer. But I realized I could get so much more out of swimming.

When did you move to Mt. Pleasant?

It was in September of 2020. I grew up in west Texas near Odessa. We moved back because I had so many relatives in the area, especially the Scottdale area.

What do you miss most about Texas?

I miss my friends and the hot weather. I love the warm temperatures. I’m starting to like the cooler temperatures.

What do you like most about Western Pennsylvania?

I like the friends that I’ve made and environment. Most of the people you meet are nice.

What do you do in your spare time?

I fish some, and I like to bike.

Talk about the medley relay team that broke a WPIAL record?

Our medley relay team did great. Everyone either equaled or lowered their times from last year. Gunner did a great job, probably swam his best time

Being that Lily King is on the team, have you learned anything from her?

I haven’t, but I can see others probably have. She’s a phenomenal swimmer and a hard worker. But we swim different styles.

Steelers or Cowboys?

I’m not a big NFL fan, so I’ll say the Steelers. I’m a bigger college football fan. I like Ohio State. That’s where my dad, Dave, was born. He passed away in 2020.

What’s the last movie you watched?

Gran Turismo.

Where is your favorite vacation spot?

Any place that has a beach. I love lying in the sand and enjoying the sun.

Do you have a dream vacation spot?

I’d like to go to New Zealand.

Where is your go-to place after a game or practice and what do you eat?

We head to Panera Bread or Chick-fil-A. I like a smokehouse BBQ chicken sandwich and mac and cheese at Panera. At Chick-fil-A get a four-count chicken tenders and fries.

What is your favorite meal you mom makes?

I like her spaghetti and meat balls.

What type of music do you like?

I like all music. I listen to whatever I’m in the mood for.

If you could have dinner with anyone, who would it be and what would you talk about?

My dad so we could talk about what has happened for me since he died.

Bill Beckner Jr. is a TribLive reporter covering local sports in Westmoreland County. He can be reached at bbeckner@triblive.com.


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