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The Activities Matter - Student Spotlight Blog

September Student Spotlight
 9/25/2015

September
   

Kenneth Turner
THOMAS JEFFERSON HS

Kenneth Turner is a senior at Thomas Jefferson High School in Auburn.  A leader on and off the field, he is the WIAA’s Activities Matter Student Spotlight for the month of September.

Turner is an outstanding football player for the Raiders, earning WIAA Athlete of the Week honors after scoring 32 of his team’s 33 points in a close win against Puyallup during week one. This season, the versatile Turner has 434 rushing yards, 99 receiving yards, has thrown for a touchdown and also has 11 tackles and a fumble return for a touchdown on defense. The Raiders are (1-2) so far this season. Last year, Turner was named to the 2nd Team All-League Defense and has been the MVP of the Raiders the past two seasons.
 
“Kenneth is football savvy. He understands the game, both sides of the ball, he really does. He is a football player. I’ve had some good ones, but I’ve never had one that understands the game as much as him. He understands the whole picture,” said Thomas Jefferson Head Coach, Jeff Zenisek, who in his second year as Kenneth’s head coach, has been impressed with him on and off the field.
 
“The biggest thing I’ve seen from last year to this year, is his leadership…There are a lot of kids that really respect Kenny and look up to him. They’re working hard because he’s working hard.”
 
 
Turner’s focus is evident, especially when asked about his game day rituals. “Every game day, I play the same song all day. ‘Till I Collapse’ by Eminem. From the moment I wake up, it’s my alarm clock. All day, I don’t listen to anything else but that one song,” Turner explained.

A standout wrestler for Thomas Jefferson as well, Turner was awarded the Chuck Bullard Memorial Grinder Award at last year’s Hammerhead Invitational Wrestling Tournament. He began wrestling in middle school, but gave it up the first two years of high school to play basketball. Ultimately, Turner returned to wrestling mainly for the conditioning aspect.

The value of school activities and sports are clear to Turner,
 
“Sports help me get up every morning and are more motivation for me to go to school.”
Coach Z sees the value of school activities for his athletes, as well, and works hard to make sure that the football field is like a second home for his team.

“This offseason we went to a couple of scrimmages, but we couldn’t afford a bus. So we took my motorhome down, we had like 28 guys in there and guess who was in the copilot seat…Kenny. In the end, we’re family and that is important. I love their camaraderie. We are battling hard this year.”

Having been on the gridiron since the young age of 5, and citing one of his most memorable sports experience as playing in the little league championship game in Husky Stadium (where he rushed for 242 yards and 2 touchdowns), Turner hopes to continue his football career as long as possible. If that doesn’t work out, he’d like to go into the military and potentially study engineering.

 
 
Shelby Schreier
EAST VALLEY (YAKIMA) HS

Shelby Schreier is a senior at East Valley High School in Yakima. With success on the volleyball court, and the drive to try new things, she is the WIAA’s Activities Matter Student Spotlight for the month of September.

Scheier is a standout volleyball player for the East Valley Red Devils.
 
After recording 22 digs, 21 kills and nine blocks in their season-opening jamboree, Shelby earned WIAA Athlete of the Week honors. She has continued to lead her team on the court, posting impressive numbers and carrying the team to a 3-0 record so far. As a sophomore, Schreier was an All-League Honorable Mention. During her junior campaign, she earned First Team All-League honors. She has played in two WIAA State Volleyball tournaments, as a freshman and sophomore. This year, she is looking to help her team return to the State Tournament after getting knocked out in regional qualifying a year ago. 

Coach Lindsey Barnes remembers that game well, but not just because of the heartbreaking loss.

"Last year we should have gone to the State Tournament. We won the first two games at regionals, then went to five and lost. But, it was the most amazing game that Shelby has ever had. And she knows that, and I know that. Coaching her sometimes feels like, ‘Wow! That’s my player!” said Coach Barnes, who is entering her third season as East Valley’s Head Coach.
 
Shelby was named Team Captain this year and is one of three seniors on the team leading the underclassmen in their journey back to State.  “We (the seniors) have been to State twice so I feel like they (the underclassmen) look up to us; they’re looking for what to do next and also help with things outside of volleyball. As a team, our goal is to work as hard as we can, support each other and go all out.” 
 
 
Shelby believes 
“Activities Matter” because of all of the diverse opportunities activities present to students and the opportunities to build character. Shreier has taken full advantage of the activities offered by her high school. Last year, she decided to do something totally different and tried out for the school play, earning one of the supporting lead roles. This year, she wanted to mix it up again and chose to try out for the cheer team.  She will cheer for the basketball and wrestling teams this winter.

In addition to these activities, Shelby is a member of the JROTC, a US Army-sponsored program offered to high school students. A 3.6 GPA student, she also takes running start classes to prepare herself to become a nurse or physician’s assistant in the future.
 
Both Shelby and Coach Barnes agree on the value of activities, especially in their rural community.
 
“All of our groups, activities and sports keep kids out of trouble. To be honest, there aren’t a lot of other things to do here, we’re kind of rural. Most kids have something they’re involved with after school. It is great being a part of a community that supports the school, especially athletics, and they want the best for all the teams,” Coach Barnes said.

For Shelby, without school activities, “it would be rather boring. I wouldn’t know what to do. I would probably be just sitting at home, watching TV.”

Shelby plans to go to college next year to continue both her volleyball career and her studies to work in the medical field.
  

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September 2015

9/25/2015 September Student Spotlight

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