Thursday, 10 January 2019 15:02

1590 WAKR Student Athletes of the Week

This week our 1590 WAKR Male Student Athlete of the Week is junior basketball player Lukas Swartz of Mogadore High School. 

Lukas says the love of basketball came from his family growing up.
 
“My dad and my uncle played in college and I always grew up with a ball in my hands, and I've played ever since I was little," he said.
 
He says playing for his dad, Russ Swartz is a interesting and fun dynamic.
 
“I enjoy it a lot because he'll help me a lot, and at home, we talk basketball a lot."
   

 
The head coach had this to say about Lukas as a player and a person.
 
“Lukas is a hard worker both in the classroom and on the court,” Swartz said. “He wants to be the one best player and more importantly be the best person he can possibly be, and with that he is very team oriented and always puts the success of the team first.” 
 
In addition to being a member of the basketball team, Lukas plays baseball, and is a member of the National Honor Society.
 
Our next 1590 WAKR Female Student Athlete of the Week is Hope Murphy, a junior basketball player from Mogadore High School. 
 
She says that working with her coaches and teammates is a true joy as they get ready to compete on the hardwood.
 
“We have come a long way from where we started this year," Murphy said. "We're a young team."
 
 
 
   
Her head coach Jennifer Ritch said she is a true leader on and off the court.
 
“Hope is a fantastic student athlete that always gives 100% whether on the basketball court, cross country course or track,” she explains.
 
“She is a great leader and she brings tenacity and toughness to our team, always putting her teammates first and is a perfect representative of what a Mogadore Wildcat is all about.”
 
In addition to being a three sport athlete, Murphy is a member of the National Honor Society and Junior Akron Leadership.
 
“It's opened me up to a lot of different professions and situations that have been very eye-opening to me."
 
We wish Lukas and Hope the best in all of their future endeavors. 
Published in SAOTW

This week our 1590 WAKR Male Student Athlete of the Week is Romello Pacely, a junior basketball player from North High School.

Romello says he got into basketball at an early age and stuck with the game when he got to high school.
 
“I got into it from my brother," he said. "I always looked up to him, so I liked the game of basketball."
 
The junior letterman says he, his teammates and coaches are determined to work hard, hold themselves accountable, and change the culture at North. 
 
“He (Coach Marc Smith) motivates us every day, always pushes us to be better," Romello explained.
  
 
 
  
In addition to being a basketball player, Pacely maintains a 3.3 GPA and works hard in the classroom as well as the court.
 
His coach Marc Smith talked about his work ethic and how he’s developing as a player and a person. 
 
“Romello is a young man who has worked very hard in the classroom and on the court, “ Smith said. “He hasn't allowed his limitations to dictate who he is as a person. “
 
We are proud of what he has accomplished in the classroom and look forward to watching his development over the next couple of years.”
 
Our next Female Student Athlete of the Week is Akilah Primm, a senior basketball player from North High School. 
 
She says she got the competition bug from her sister, Amani who plays college basketball at Tri-C.
 
Primm  says that by her sister earning that college scholarship, it pushes her to do the same.
 
“She was playing when we were younger and it became fun to me," Akilah said. "It makes me want to go (to college) and be with her."
 
As a captain and one of the key cogs for North, she knows that getting the best out of her teammates is one of the most important things she can do for her team.
 
 
  
Her coach Shermaine Meadows talked about her leadership on and off the court. 
 
“Akilah Primm has been a quality leader to our program in which we have grown to depend on day in and day out,” he explained.
 
She is by far the best defender on the team and her blazing speed makes it almost impossible to stay in front off.”
 
Off the court, she has the same drive and determination.
 
“Akilah has helped change the culture here at North high school with a high level of excellence and competitive spirit that transcends the court,” Meadows said. 
 
“Akilah volunteers at the haven of rest and churches around the city. She carries a Gpa of 3.5  One of the most coachable kids I’ve experienced.”
 
We wish Romello and Akilah the best in all of their future endeavors. 
Published in SAOTW

his week our 1590 WAKR Female Student Athlete of the Week is Emily Andrassy, a senior basketball player from Stow-Munroe Falls High School.

Emily says she started playing basketball from an early age, and has enjoyed the game ever since.

“My parents are very athletic, but I’ve always been athletic and I enjoyed playing outside with my neighbors,” she said.

As a four-year letterwinner and two-time captain both junior and senior year, Emily said that even though she can motivate her teammates vocally, she mostly leads by example on the practice floor, and on game day.

"I probably lead more by example, but I try to be more vocal, but it’s all about coming to practice and working hard.”

 

 Her head coach Bob Podges had some great words for Andrassy and what she brings to the court.

"Emily is the heart and soul of our team," he said. "She's our best defender with an oustanding competive spirt."

The leadership qualities that she displays on the court also are on display off the court as Andrassy participates in the Freshman Mentorship program, something she takes a great deal of pride in.

Upon graduation in the spring, Emily plans on attending Kent State University.

Our next Male Student Athlete is Jackson Carlson, a senior basketball player from Stow High School.

He said he too fell in love with the game of basketball from an early age.

"My dad put a basketball in my hand since I before I can remember, and I’ve always been around the sport and loved it,” he said. 

As a two-sport athlete for Stow (basketball and baseball), Carlson says he enjoys being with his teammates and working with them towards a common goal.

Coach Dave Close, the longtime coach of the Bulldogs, said that Jackson has grown as a player and as a person.

"He is a young man who has worked very hard to improve as a player and as a junior, he did not receive a lot of playing time. But he rolled up his sleeves and worked hard 
the entire off-season to become a better and more well-rounded player," he said. 

He also works hard off the court as well to become a more well-rounded person as well.

"He too has volunteered at Open M and has volunteered in the summer helping to teach youngsters 
the game of basketball," Close said.

 

 Carlson plans on majoring in education when he attends college in the spring, He says helping youngsters is something he's really interested in.

"I always liked being around students and want to coach as well,” he explained.

We wish Emily and Jackson the best in all of their future endeavors. 

Published in SAOTW

This week our 1590 WAKR Female Student Athlete of the Week is Imani Jackson, a senior basketball player from Buchtel High School.

Jackson says the team dynamics are strong, an aspect of playing at Buchtel she enjoys.
 
“We have fun when we're at practice," Jackson explains. "The girls are fun, we're laughing throughout practice, even though we're out of breath," she said with a laugh.
 
Her head coach Brian Neugebauer says Imani is an integral part of the team for the Lady Griffs.
 
“She is a leader that has become vocal and assertive over time,” he said. 

 
“She has a high work ethic and through that work has improved all aspects of her game.”
 
Neugebauer says that leadership and and overall drive to excel carries over
away from the court. 

“Imani is in the Nursing Program at Buchtel CLC, maintains an accumulative GPA of 3.8, scored a 24 on her ACT & is an overall outstanding individual.”

 
Our next Male Student Athlete of the Week is Addison Singletary, a junior basketball player from Buchtel.
 
He transferred from Kenmore-Garfield High School after spending two years there, and his new teammates at Buchtel embraced him from the start before the season even began.
 
“They were very welcoming and it's been a great experience," he said. 
 
His coach, Matt Futch, a 2002 Buchtel graduate said Singletarty is a great young man on and off the court.
 
“He is a tremendous kid who has an unbelievable work ethic in the classroom and on the court,” Futch explains.
 
  

  
 
“He is a very coachable young man and a joy to be around. “
 
 "Addy" holds a 3.5 GPA currently and says one of the highlights from his time at Buchtel was helping with the youth clinic earlier in the year.
 
We wish Imani and Addison the best in all of their future endeavors.
Published in SAOTW

This week our 1590 WAKR Male Student Athlete of the Week is Zach Miller, a senior hockey player from CVCA.

Hockey’s been a big part of his life from his early years when his parents had him taking skating lessons.

“Ever since I was seven years old, I started playing hockey and have played it ever since,” Zach said.

He says being around the guys is one of the best aspects of being on the team.

“Being around the guys is so much fun, because of the atmosphere that’s provided,” Miller said.

  

  His coach Doug Fairchild says that Zach is a true leader both on and off the ice.

“Zach is an outstanding student, one of the top students in our engineering program at CVCA,” Fairchild explains.

“Zach was a unanimous selection as a team captain this season due to his hard work and dedication. He is an excellent example for our younger players to follow.”

When he’s not playing hockey, Zach’s a part of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes and the National Honor Society. He’s also done some volunteer work for the Akron–Canton Regional Foodbank.

Upon graduation in the spring, Zach plans to major in Areospace Engineering.

Our next Student Athlete is Lauren Davis, a senior basketball player from CVCA.

She says working with her coaches and teammates is something she truly enjoys whenever she steps on the basketball court.

“We all just care about each other so much and it makes for a good atmosphere during games and practices,” she explained.

She is a two year captain, and a three-year varsity letter winner for the Royals.

Her coach Andy O’Keefe says that leadership translates to all facets of Lauren’s life.

“She exemplifies what it means to be a servant leader. Lauren's toughness, skillset, and determination make her a force to be reckoned with on the basketball court,” O’Keefe.

“At the same time, her selfless and humble character makes everyone on the team better.”

Upon graduation in the spring, Lauren plans to attend Kent State University to study nursing.

We wish Zach and Lauren the best in all of their future endeavors.

Published in SAOTW

This week our 1590 WAKR Male Student Athlete of the Week is junior basketball player Josh Fleming from Woodridge High School.

 He says he got into basketball at an early age and has enjoyed it ever since.
 
“I’ve been playing it my whole life, one of my friends was playing when I was younger and I just wanted to play with them,” he said. “From then I grew to love the sport.”
 
A two-sport letterman in both soccer and basketball, Fleming says competition and being around his teammates are a couple of the most important and enjoyable things about being a Woodridge Bulldog. 
 
 
 
“I enjoy playing with my teammates and coaches, they’re always super supportive,” he said. 
 
His coach Richard Blevins had some high praise for the junior.
 

“Josh epitomizes what we want Woodridge Basketball to represent,” Blevins said.

 “He is a tireless worker and a great teammate as well as an excellent student and we always know Josh will give 100% in any situation.”

 One unique thing about Josh is his volunteer work during the Polar Express in Peninsula during the holiday season. 

 Our next 1590 WAKR Female Student Athlete of the Week is Isabella (Bella) Chriakos, a junior basketball player from Woodridge High School. 
 
She enjoys playing basketball at Woodridge because of the great relationships she built with her teammates over the years.
 
“I love my team so much, every day with them is a blessing,” she said. 
 

A three-sport athlete participating in golf, basketball, and track, Bella says that the atmosphere at Woodridge is a positive one for her and her teammates.
 
“It makes it great because I see the girls every day and we do a lot of team bonding activities.”
 
Her basketball coach Chris Nauer talked about her leadership on and off the court.
 
 “She works extremely hard throughout the season as well as the off season,” Nauer said. “She is very dedicated to the game and is a great teammate.”
 
 That dedication crosses over from the court to the classroom. 
 
“She encompasses everything that represents a student-athlete excelling in the classroom and on the basketball court.” 
 
In addition to being a starter on the basketball team, Bella is a member of the National Honor Society, Spanish Club among other activities.
 
When she’s not playing sports or studying, she’s volunteering at One of A Kind Pet Rescue and doing other philanthropic endeavors such as organizing the school blood drive at the high school. 
 
We wish Josh and Bella the best in all of their future endeavors. 
Published in SAOTW

This week our 1590 WAKR Male Student Athlete of the Week is Logan Johnson a senior wrestler from Firestone. 

Logan says that he got into the sport of wrestling at an early age and has loved it ever since.
 
A team captain and a letterman for the Falcons, Johnson says working with his coaches and teammates is something he enjoys.
 
“You make good friends when you wrestle, you meet a lot of people in tournaments, it's fun but it's hard work."
 
His coach Dan Sandy had some great words for Logan and the work he puts in on the mat and in other aspects of his life.
 
“Logan was the 2018 Akron City Series Heavyweight Champion and was also a member of the Academic All-City Series Team,” Sandy explained. “He is the rock of our team.”
 
 
 
  
In addition, he also helps with other activities when he has time. 
 
“He (Logan) helps volunteer at our community youth league events with concessions and doing score tables at times. He is also a member of our school's prestigious Akron School of the Arts Visual Arts Program. “
 
Logan says the Firestone community is like one big family and one he’s glad to be a part of.
 
“No matter where you go, you're always saying hi to people, no matter what."
 
Upon graduation in the spring, Johnson plans to attend The Ohio State University to study Agriculture.
 
Our next 1590 WAKR Female Student Athlete is Madeline Dyer, a junior swimmer from Firestone.
 
She says swimming has always been a part of what she’s done, and she wanted to follow her older brother, who swam as well.
 
“I kind of wanted to do what he was doing, so my parents put me in swim lessons and it grew from there,"
 
She says being a part of the Firestone swimming tradition is an honor and a privilege. 
 
“It's such an incredible thing to have that kind of tradition," she says. 
 
Her coach Cindy Dial says she is a hard worker in and out of the pool. 
 
"Madeline is a great role model and she has a passion for her academics as well as her athletics and it is very contagious," she explained.
 
A returning letterman, All-Ohio Award Winner and All American, Madeline says she sets high goals for not only herself, but her team as well.
 
 
 
 When she’s not in the pool or studying, she’s volunteering at One of a Kind Pet Shelter and hanging with friends. 
 
We wish Logan and Madeline the best in all of their future endeavors. 
Published in SAOTW

This week our 1590 WAKR Female Student Athlete of the Week is Theresa Damm, a senior basketball player from Our Lady of the Elms High School.

She says she got into basketball at an early age and as a senior leader, she wants to lead her team not only vocally, but by example as well.

"We have a young team, a lot of freshmen, so it's going to be a lot of them (the coaches) coaching, but also myself helping out the younger players learning the game," she says.

Coach John Reed echoed that sentiment as he offered his take on Theresa both as a player and as a person.

"She is a role model on and off the court and we are looking for her to model and teach the younger ladies how to play the game and how to do things the "Elms" way,"
he explained.

On the court, she will be expected to lead as well, Reed says.

"This will be her 4th year in the program in which she excels in every facet of the game and she has the ability to handle the ball and to post up."

Damm says that the Elms community is a very close one and they encourage leadership and being involved all across the board.

"Everybody really gets a fair shot at leadership and to have a voice, and to speak and be heard," she explained.

 

 Theresa is also her class vice president, and is involved in community activities such as volunteering at the Haven of Rest and the American Red Cross.

Upon graduation in the spring, Theresa plans on attending the University of Akron to study criminal justice and participate in the ROTC program. 

Our next 1590 WAKR Male Student Athlete of the Week is Nick Llewellyn, a senior football player from St. Vincent-St. Mary High School.

Nick says that the brotherhood amongst the football players and especially his fellow seniors was one of the things he most enjoyed during his time with the Fighting Irish.

"Not much has changed with our group, we were always fighting and shooting  for what we want, that was the main thing that kept us going all the way through."

He said that the alumni who played for the Irish also helped  guide the team as well.

"Everyone comes back and the whole school supports you, and it's a great family atmosphere," he said.

Llewellyn's coach, first year head coach Bobby Nickol talked about his grit and toughness on the football field.

"He's an Unbelievably hard working player and gives every ounce of his 160 pound frame to play a position meant for 200 pound guys," Coach Nickol said.

Nick 13 tackles, a forced fumble and an interception on Friday, their last game of the 2018 season.

As a young man, Nickol says Llewellyn is just as impressive.

"He has 4.0 GPA and is going to be highly successful in anything he chooses to do in life," Nickol continued. " He is the definition of a STVM student athlete."

 

 Nick is a two-sport athlete as a football player and a wrestler.

In addition to those things, he is also a Peer Minister, a member of the National Honor Society, and a member of the Irish Athletes for Christ, among other clubs and groups.

We wish Nick and Theresa the best in all of their future endeavors. 

 

Published in SAOTW

This week our 1590 WAKR Student Athlete of the Week is junior football player Ethan Wright of Manchester High School.

Ethan says he got into football at an early age and loved the team aspect and the camaraderie of his teammates, some of whom he plays with today.

“I just love the game,” Ethan says. “I started playing in second grade, and have just loved it ever since.”

He plays for the Panthers and legendary coach Jim France, Ohio’s all time wins leader in high school.

 

 

France says Wright, who plays running back and safety at Manchester, is a team-first player despite a great deal of individual accomplishments.

“Ethan Wright is a quality young man who strives to get better as an athlete and human being each and every day,” France said.

On the field, even though he was a first team all state performer and a three year letterman, France explains that Ethan’s work ethic sets him apart.

“Ethan is a hard working and humble guy, he is team oriented and is a winner.”

Wright says the team success this year on the gridiron stems from the togetherness and brotherhood that has started since before the season began.

Ethan says that his work on the field translates to the classroom as well, saying it’s going to prepare him for college and beyond, taking pride in his work.

“You just got to work hard in the classroom, you have to have the right GPA or coaches won’t look at you,” he said.

Our next 1590 WAKR Female Student Athlete of the Week is Audrey Dolan a junior soccer player from Manchester High School.

Audrey says the coaches and teammates are what keeps her going and looking forward to working with them day in and day out.

“It’s actually a lot of fun,” Dolan said. “It gets stressful when the games get hard, but it’s fun.”

Her coach Eddie Kissner says that Dolan’s work ethic in both the classroom with a 3.5 GPA and the soccer field is apparent to all.

“Audrey has improved so much as the season has progressed. Audrey works extremely hard as a forward pressuring backs to create turnovers,” he said.

“She has also become a great finisher scoring some of our biggest goals of the season.”

In addition to being on the soccer team, Dolan is also a member of the Ski Club and the Art Club.

When she’s not on the soccer field or staying on top of her studies, she volunteers at the Cuyahoga Falls Women’s Club.

“My grandma plays cards there and I cook and clean there a couple times a week,” she says.

Audrey says she enjoys her time there and she’s always picking up some good advice from the people at the Women’s Club.

We wish Ethan and Audrey the best in all of their future endeavors.

 

Published in SAOTW

This week our 1590 WAKR Female Student Athlete of the Week is Brooke Sells a senior soccer player from Coventry High School.

Brooke says her love of the sport started at an early age.
 
"My mother got me into soccer about 15 years ago, my brother started playing when he was 5 and we've played ever since," Brooke explained. 
This year as a captain and 2nd team All-PTC member, Sells says she leads her team both vocally and by example.
 
"I feel like I'm a combination of both, she said, "I/m always telling my teammates where to be on the field." 
Her head coach Mike Gaugler echoes that sentiment by explaining how Brooke took a leadership role with the Comets early on.
 
“This being my 1st year coaching High School Girls Soccer, Brooke was a definite asset to myself and the team getting us rolling with conditioning and pace for the season,” Gaugler said. 
 
 “As a player she is very fierce and has great ball placement anywhere on the field!”

    
As of this writing, that has truly translated into success for her and the team this season, as she has 9 goals, 12 assists this season.
 
She’s already taking some classes at the University of Akron and plans on studying either Biology or Microbiology at Walsh University upon graduation in the spring. 
 
We wish Brooke the best in all of her future endeavors. 
 
Our next student athlete is Caleb Shank of Coventry High School. 
 
Kaleb says the experience of playing football for the Comets is a great experience when it comes to working with his coaches and teammates.
 
“It's really fun to be out there with all of them, it's always a good time, and I love playing hard with them," he said. 
 
 
 
  
He says that as a senior, the biggest thing he and his peers can pass on to the underclassmen is the work ethic it takes to be a Coventry football player.
 
“Just give it everything you got and never take a play off," he explained. 
 
Kaleb’s coach Ed Egan said that his perseverance as a person translates well to his ability on the field.
 
“Kaleb has had some knee injuries in the past,” Egan said.
 
“He came out this year as a senior, and has had a tremendous impact with 2 Sacks and 1 tackle for loss against Streetsboro, and this past Friday night against Woodridge he had 3 Sacks and 1 tackle for loss which was very impressive."
 
In addition to being a two-year letterman in football, Kaleb is a wrestler during the winter season. 
 
Upon graduation in the spring, Kaleb plans on studying physical therapy. His own experiences with injury led him to choosing that career path. 
 
“I had a couple knee surgeries and going to physical therapy seeing how they help people, I was really interested in it," he said. 
 
We wish Kaleb the best in all of his future endeavors. 
 
Published in Sam and Brad