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2020 Scholar Athletes - Girls

2020 Scholar Athletes - Girls

Division 1

Anne Dotzler, Waunakee High School - 4.00 GPA

Athletics Snapshot
Eight varsity letters combined in cross country, basketball and soccer...all-conference first team honors in cross country one year...team MVP in basketball one year.

Essay
High school is what you make of it. Each day that I walked through the front doors or stepped onto the court, I had a choice. I had a choice to make that school day a positive or negative one. I had a choice to be an uplifting teammate or one that tears others down. The greatest lesson I have learned in my high school career is that it is so important to have a positive mindset, no matter the circumstances. In my four years of academic experience, I challenged myself with a rigorous course load. It wasn’t always easy to stay on top of my work. However, I learned to spin a night of homework from something that is considered a burden into an opportunity to improve as a student. This mindset kept me motivated and excited to attend school every day, eager to learn. On the court and field, I found success in focusing on my effort and energy at every practice, as these were the only things I could control. I learned that the team succeeded when I gave positive energy, even if I was having an off game. My greatest take away from high school sports is to make the choice to put my team before myself by giving off energy to others. I will be able to apply this mindset to every situation that I encounter in my future. I am so grateful to have had the opportunity to learn these lessons throughout high school.

 

Brittany Helm, Muskego High School - 3.62 GPA

Athletics Snapshot
Ten varsity letters combined in cross country, basketball and track & field...member of two-time state champion cross country team...member of state champion 3,200-meter relay team...all-conference first team honors in cross country four years...team MVP in basketball two years.

Essay
The greatest lesson I’ve learned throughout high school, juggling both athletics and schooling, would be the importance of dedication and balance. I’ve always been the type of person who would never settle for average. I understood that I could be the best by setting high goals and achieving them over time. Every single day I would have the opportunity to improve in the classroom or on the track. I’d never take advantage of any workout or any assignment. With this urge, I was able to stay on top of priorities in school and also work as hard as I could in practice. My dedication would have to be one of my greatest strengths as a person. All that I have achieved is due to my commitment to the things that will make me most successful in life. I’ve also been exposed to the trouble of balance. Honestly, I still struggle with finding the perfect balance to this day, but I have been able to manage it much better than I used to. Balance is a topic different for everyone. For me, balancing sports and education has become normal. Making sure my work is done for school has a high priority. Keeping priorities in order is very important. I couldn’t be more grateful to have the opportunity to play and run the sports that I do. Personally, I love keeping busy. Boredom never seems to run across my mind. I will forever be thankful for the opportunity I have had during high school to grow and achieve everything that I have.

 

Maya Novack, Cedarburg High School - 4.00 GPA

Athletics Snapshot
Six varsity letters combined in swimming & diving, and track & field...four-time sectional champion in swimming & diving...state finalist in swimming & diving four years.

Essay
Being a student athlete in high school has helped me appreciate the importance of hard work, dedication, balance, and time management. I dedicate myself completely to every activity I participate in, and I work everyday to achieve the goals I set to accomplish. With that dedication, I have found it important to find a balance among school, swimming, time with family and friends, and all of the other extracurriculars I am a part of. Having a busy schedule has allowed me to cherish every moment I get to spend with my friends and my family but also appreciate the time I get to focus on myself and relax, which is also very important. Swim practice is a time that I get to relax my mind and see my friends and teammates. Swimming has pushed me out of my comfort zone physically and mentally. I have learned to thrive amidst adversity and to push through any hard practice or race in order to learn from my mistakes and become a better athlete and person. Using the important lessons I’ve learned in and out of the pool have shaped me into the person I am today and have prepared me for life after high school. I have committed to continue my academic and athletic careers at the United States Naval Academy. Hard work, dedication, balance, and time management are all essential aspects for success that will be crucial in college and eventually when I am able to proudly serve this country. 

 

Jadin O'Brien, Divine Savior Holy Angels High School - 3.78 GPA

Athletics Snapshot
Nine varsity letters combined in cross country, basketball and track & field...two-time state track & field champion in 300-meter hurdles and champion in the 100-meter hurdles...all-conference first team honors in basketball three years...team MVP in track & field three years and basketball three years.

Essay
The biggest lessons I have learned are to not let failure get in my way and to listen to my coaches and parents. Last track season I was picked to win State in four events. The very first event I participated in was the long jump. I got on the runway, did my routine, and jumped. I landed past the state record line. Suddenly, the official held up a red flag. I had scratched. The next jump was the same distance, but I again scratched. The final jump I took was not very good as I was just trying to get into the pit. Unfortunately, I did not make it to the finals in an event I was picked to win. I could have let that failure affect the next three events I had to participate in, but instead I learned that you can’t let your emotions get the best of you and I couldn’t let one mistake set the pace for the rest of the competitions. I went on to win the 100 and 300 hurdles and my 4X100 team took second. I have also learned that listening to my coaches and parents is difficult, yet so important. I am very driven and at times want to push myself more than I probably should, so it has been important for me to learn to listen to those that have more knowledge and are looking out for my best interests. Learning to listen has helped me achieve great thing.

 

Division 2

Laura Beghin, Wisconsin Dells High School - 3.90 GPA

Athletics Snapshot
Seven varsity letters combined in cross country and track and field...all-conference first team honors in cross country four years...team MVP in cross country four years.

Essay
Throughout my four years of high school athletics, I have learned many lessons from coaches and teammates, from the cumbersome work I put in daily and from happy wins and depressing losses. I have learned how to work for what I want; in school and athletics, and in all aspects of life, you work for what you get. Coming up short in school or in running has taught me to work hard, even if the people around you are not. I have learned to prioritize, between academics, workouts, and personal activities, and I will understand for the rest of my life that what is important will always go first. I’ve learned to look big picture, as a bad race or bad test or even bad season are just small parts of success in life. I have learned how to fail and how to succeed, both humbled and grateful, as I am fortunate to be able to compete athletically and pursue an education in the first place. After becoming seriously injured multiple years in high school I have most importantly learned to not give up for what you have a passion for, and just because others around you may not be putting in work, there is no excuse, as it will brutally be shown if the work is not put in. Finally I have learned that there is more to life than sports, that life is not just this moment but a collection of the many things that make you happy.

 

Izzy Carroll, Platteville High School - 4.00 GPA

Athletics Snapshot
Eleven varsity letters combined in volleyball, basketball, and track & field...all-conference first team honors in volleyball three years...team MVP in volleyball two years...valedictorian of the 2020 senior class.

Essay
When I think about my academic and athletic experiences and the lessons I have learned through them, I realize they work hand-in-hand.  Playing competitive sports has not only improved my physical skills, but it has also taught me life-long lessons. I have learned how to control my emotions and perform under pressure, how to push myself mentally and physically, and how to trust my teammates and the process it takes to reach a goal. These lessons come into play in several ways, both on and off the court. I can perform under pressure during a playoff game, a final exam, or a job interview.  Trusting my teammates translates into trusting future coworkers; pushing myself can help with understanding the future challenges I will have to overcome to be successful. Most importantly, sports have taught me respect.  I have respect for not only coaches, officials, and players, but also teachers, classmates, and community members. My education is a top priority and has taught me that hard work pays off.  Studying for hours for a single test will be worth it, because that long-awaited A will be the light at the end of the tunnel. Being a three sport athlete has also taught me time management skills and the ability to prioritize. Education has taught me that nothing in life is handed to you on a silver platter. If you want something, you must put in the time and effort because only you can get you where you want to be.

 

Katelyn Kitzinger, Marinette High School - 3.99 GPA

Snapshot
Eleven varsity letters combined in cross country, basketball, and track & field...all-conference first team honors in cross country three years and basketball one year...team MVP in basketball three years, cross country two years, and track & field two years.

Essay
I have learned many great and valuable lessons during my high school career as a student-athlete. Whether it be my academics or athletics, I always strive for excellence and success which is a direct reflection of my accomplishments. On all of my teams, I have contributed responsibility, leadership, a positive attitude, and determination to succeed: all at which I have learned and will continue to develop throughout my life. While learning plays and moves is important, I believe that it is the intangibles like hard work, discipline, persistence, and passion that truly outline success. However, with every success arises some challenges. Dealing with challenges is vital due to inevitable obstacles that constantly surface. I have learned to look past the negativity and always maintain a positive attitude because that is an aspect that can ultimately determine the outcome of any situation. Furthermore, I have discovered the value of self-motivation and time-management. As a student-athlete, the discipline and drive to get work done to further benefit yourself in a timely manner is crucial, and I believe learning this now will greatly benefit me later in life. All in all, everything I have done up to now is a preparation for later in life and these invaluable lessons have ultimately better prepared me for it. As I continue on with my academics and athletic career next year at the collegiate level, I will use these valuable lessons I have learned and continue to strive for excellence.

 

Linzy Sendelbach, Arcadia High School - 4.0 GPA

Snapshot
Eleven varsity letters in volleyball, basketball and softball...all-conference first team honors in basketball three years, softball two years and volleyball one year...team MVP in volleyball one year...valedictorian of the 2020 senior classs.

Essay
One of the greatest lessons I learned through academics and athletics is time management. Being heavily involved in athletics along with staying on top of my classwork, I had to learn how to make enough time to finish quality school work while giving one hundred percent focus at practice and games. Going forward, I have learned the valuable lesson of being able to handle a lot of things on my plate, and I am able to finish the assignment or film study efficiently and to the best of my ability. Another great lesson I learned was leadership. Throughout my years, I have grown more confident in stepping up into a leadership role whether it's in the classroom or on the court/field. I've learned how to connect with my teammates or group mates, so I can lead them how they need to be led. Everyone interacts different, and through sports specifically, I have picked up on the different ways to connect with people whether it’s gently encouraging them that they have the next one or going right up to their face. I want to carry this skill into a manger or supervisor role one day. One of my favorite lessons learned through sports and academics is being able to work with many different types of people. With team sports and group projects, I had to adapt to the different personalities and find the best way for us to work together. As years went by, it got a lot easier.  

 

Division 3

Kayla Bahr, Aquinas High School -  4.00. GPA

Athletics Snapshot
Nine varsity letters combined in volleyball, basketball and softball...member of two-time state champion basketball team...valedictorian of the 2020 senior class.

Essay
I have learned many valuable lessons from high school academics and athletics that will help me later in life. One of the most valuable lessons that I have learned is how to manage my time. Throughout high school, there have been many late nights due to far away competitions as well as weekend tournaments. I have needed to use all of my time in class and after practice in order to maintain my GPA and get all of my work done. I have worked very hard throughout high school to limit my procrastination which then takes a lot of stress off of me as a student athlete as well. Another valuable skill I learned throughout academics and athletics is how to deal with adversity in a positive way. Sometimes, I would let a bad grade tear me down, but I would realize that this bad score just meant I had to work and study harder for this class. In athletics, there were tough games where the competition was extremely hard or nothing seemed to be going my way, but in those times, I knew all I needed to do was give my best effort and out hustle everyone else on the court or field. Finally, I also knew that no matter what, my teammates had my back. I could count on them in every situation because we could work as a team and respect one another. All of these lessons have made me the person and athlete I am today. 

 

Marissa Ellenbecker, Edgar High School - 3.99 GPA

Athletics Snapshot
Ten varsity letters in cross country, basketball, and track & field...two-time individual cross country state champion...State champion in 1600-meter and 3200 meter. runs...all-conference first team honors in cross country four years..team MVP in cross country four years and track & field two years.

Essay
Believing in myself is the greatest lesson that I have learned. When I was younger, I had to go to a special teacher to help me with reading. In addition, I had to reread paragraphs many times to get a better understanding of the material. I pushed myself to do better in school, because I believed that I could be one of the smartest kids in my class. As my senior year is ending, I have accomplished that very thing and am the salutatorian of my class. By believing in myself and putting in a lot of effort, I was able to attain this goal. In basketball, as a freshman, I was on the c team or jv2 which it is called sometimes. At first, I was down on myself and didn’t quite understand why I wasn’t on jv. However, I was determined to improve, make a difference on my team, and believed in myself. I became a starter on varsity the very next year, my sophomore year, and have been a starter ever since. In cross country, I became the first girl to win 4 individual marawood conference championships and the twelfth girl in state history to win 2 individual state championships. If I didn’t believe in myself, this would not have been possible. Never giving up, having good time management, and prioritizing are important, but if you don’t believe that you can do something, it just won’t happen. I believe this is the case in life, too.

 

Kameri Meredith, Colfax High School - 3.98 GPA

Athletics Snapshot
Twelve varsity letters combined in volleyball, basketball, softball, and track & field...all-conference first team honors in volleyball four years and basketball three years...team MVP in volleyball three years, basketball three years, and track & field two years.

Essay
I have learned many great lessons throughout my academic and athletic career. Practice makes perfect is only a concept, in reality, practice makes better. Practicing a skill is not about perfection. In sports, as in life, honing a skill is valuable because becoming better at anything is a reward all its own. No matter where you go in life, to be successful you must be able to handle pressure. Academics and athletics are filled with infinite pressure situations that you can learn and grow from. As an athlete, I have had to take the last second shot in a basketball game, the last swing in a volleyball match, bat in the seventh inning with two outs, and anchor a relay to earn points for my team in track and field. It is important in sports to accept that every high pressure situation game will not be a win and that every play will not go your way. As a student, I have had to study hard for big finals, take college credit courses, maintain a high GPA, and wait to be accepted for colleges I applied for. These scenarios have taught me how to handle high intensity situations all while keeping my composure. Repeated exposure to these opportunities is the best training for my future. This quote from Mike Singletary sums up me as an athlete, “Do you know what my favorite part of the game is? The opportunity to play.”

 

Skylar White, River Ridge High School -  4.00 GPA

Athletics Snapshot
Eleven varsity letters combined in volleyball, basketball, and track & field...all-conference first team honors in volleyball three years and basketball three years...team MVP in basketball two years and volleyball one year.

Essay
I’ve learned through my athletic and academic experiences that communication and balancing time play very important roles in life. Being able to communicate and work together as a team to achieve a common goal is what can make you stand apart from the rest. On the other hand, my ability to keep academics a priority throughout my high school career has been a challenge, but it is very rewarding now. In high-pressure situations, you need to be able to trust your teammates and know they have your back. As a freshman, it was very intimidating playing on varsity, but I learned quickly that teamwork is a part of the culture at River Ridge. Now as a senior, it is my job to bring the team together and get the underclassmen up to speed as fast as possible. Communication is a key to being a good leader.I think that balancing school and sports will help me later when my life gets busy. I have maintained a 4.0 GPA, and I’m the salutatorian of my class. Sports have shown me how to stay focused on the court and in the classroom. As much as I do between school and sports, I also have kept time for some fun with family and friends. I believe my busy schedule will prepare me for life after college.

 

Division 4

Aubrey Schoeneman, Mercer High School - 4.0 GPA

Athletics Snapshot
Eleven varsity letters combined in volleyball, basketball, and track & field...State champion in shot put...all-conference first team honors in volleyball two years...team MVP in volleyball three years and track & field two years.

Essay
In my time as a student-athlete at Mercer High School, I have learned many valuable lessons. Some lessons were bigger than others, but each helped make me who I am. The concepts of humility and learning to appreciate those who have been a part of my journey, allowed me to understand more clearly the purpose of high school athletics and why it is so much bigger than just playing in a game or competing in a meet. Being from a small town, your life is out there for all to see.  Whether it be on the front page of the newspaper, social media, or sometimes even the evening news, people know all about your successes and your failures. Keeping a level-head is essential when you are putting yourself out there for the world to see. Remaining humble has allowed me to savor every moment high school athletics had to offer. I did not do this by myself. None of us writing this essay have done this alone.  Without my team, I would not be the player I am.  Without my family, coaches, and teachers, I would not have had the tools to succeed. Remaining humble in success allows others to share in the celebration of all the good that happens, and gives credit to the many others that have played a part in it all. I am not a natural athlete.  I have had to work very hard to accomplish all that I have, but without those around me, I would have never become a successful student-athlete. And the reality is, after all is said and done, it doesn’t matter what I accomplished.  The mark you make on people with being the person you are, will be the only thing that is remembered. I also learned that being a small-town athlete comes with several roles.  It is more than just showing up and performing.  It is giving a high five to the 1st grader who was at the game the night before.  It is engaging in heart-felt conversations with community members who attend school events. It is making irreplaceable memories with the greatest friends anyone could ask for, on bus rides that we thought would never end. It is watching my little sister try to do things exactly like I do them. It is those tough-love, character-building talks with my parents, grandparents, teachers, and coaches. It is learning that losing does not always mean that you have lost. It is these lessons, and countless others, that I believe will carry me into my future.  The foundation that I have laid through high school athletics will allow me to transition successfully into my college academic and athletic career, and ultimately into my adult-life.  I can thank high school athletics for the memories I have, for teaching me humility and grace, and for positively influencing my future. 

 

Lauren Shields, Newman Catholic High School - 3.97 GPA

Athletics Snapshot
Eleven varsity letters combined in volleyball, basketball and soccer...member of State champion volleyball team...all-conference first team honors in volleyball two years and soccer two years...team MVP in soccer three years and volleyball two years.

Essay
Throughout high school, I have been heavily involved in extracurriculars while still focusing on my academics. From being the secretary of our school’s National Honor Society to being a captain on all three of my sports teams, I am constantly occupied with something. Although striving for success has been very important to me, I will always remember the lessons being a student-athlete has taught me.  I have learned how to manage my time well, lead in tough situations, and work hard to achieve my goals. Most importantly, I have learned how to be patient in my growth as a young woman. I have become inspired by failure, encouraging towards those around me, and driven to make a difference in people's lives. I believe being a student-athlete in high school will greatly prepare me for the real world and has given me the tools I need to succeed through future adversity. 

 

Lauren Steien, Blair-Taylor High School - 3.91 GPA

Athletics Snapshot
Seven varsity letters in swimming & diving and softball...State finalist in swimming & diving four years...all-conference first team honors in softball three years..team MVP in swimming & diving four years and softball three years.

Essay
Coming from such a rural area of Wisconsin, I have learned the significance of goal setting, the importance of composure, and the value of community throughout the entirety of my academic and athletic career.Giving myself a target to reach for, whether it be in the classroom or on the field, not only motivates me to constantly work towards my goals, but makes me responsible for figuring out how I will achieve them. However, the path to success is never perfect, ,and failure is almost always inevitable, but whether or not you fail a test or strikeout here and there, is not important, it's how you hold yourself during times of trail and, more importantly, how you pick yourself up for the ones around you that generates a true character. Academic and athletic experience give other the opportunity to see you at your best and at your worst, but that type of exposure can generate pride and a sense of identity for the community behind you.  Especially in smaller areas of the state, it is not uncommon for entire communities to rally behind their athletes.  From pep rallies to fan buses, they provide a level of support that is second to none, a gracious abundance of encouragement that could never be repaid.  With so many people standing behind you and your team, you are always working towards something greater than yourself, which is something I will value for the rest of my life.

 

Kortnie Volk, Three Lakes High School - 4.00 GPA

Athletics Snapshot
Ten varsity letters in cross country, basketball, and track & field...member of a State champion 400-meter relay team...all-conference first team honors in cross country four years..team MVP in cross country three years and track & field 3 years...valedictorian of the 2020 senior class.

Essay
One of the greatest lessons I have learned in my high school academic and athletic experiences is that you need trust. You need to trust the process, your coaches, teammates, teachers, and yourself. Without trusting and believing in myself, I would not have been able to accomplish my personal goals. Without trusting my teammates and coaches, we would not have received state recognition on the track and learned how to be resilient. Trusting the process is the first step to success, but this is only achieved through hard work and dedication. Being passionate about athletics and getting a good education has made dedication easier. Through high school, I have found that being dedicated leads to a busy schedule year round. At times, it was difficult to find the perfect balance between being a student and an athlete. Now, looking back, I would not trade my busy school and athletic schedule, late nights, and long bus rides with my coaches and teammates for anything. The opportunity to be a student-athlete was one of the greatest things I have ever been given, and it has helped me realize what is truly important in life. I will be taking all of these skills and values I have learned from high school academics and athletics to college and eventually, my career. All of these aforementioned skills are crucial lifelong attributes essential for success, but all would not have been possible without trust and believing in myself.