Athletes in the Crowd: Freshmen Edition

From the best of the best, these freshmen have excelled on varsity teams

By Bailey Welshans

Rachel Dunklee – Dance

Since Rachel Dunklee was two years old, she’s had a passion for dancing. Other than making it onto the Varsity Dance team, one of Dunklee’s biggest accomplishments is going to National’s with her dance studio, Dancer’s edge, last year. She is an excellent student, keeping her grades up, and turning assignments in on time. Being one of two freshmen on the varsity dance team, Dunklee has a lot to live up to. However, it doesn’t seem to faze her.

“She does a very good job of learning routines quickly, and hitting all of the steps correctly,” senior dancer Evelyn Hawley said.

Nathan Kangas –  Tennis

Kangas started playing Tennis at the age of 8, and has absolutely loved it! Transitioning into the high school, he decided to continue playing and made the men’s tennis team for the 2017-2018 school year. One of Kangas’ proudest moments was when he received a second place at a 14 and under tournament, in a 16 person bracket. However, he trained for a long time to receive that award. His former private tennis trainer was nationally ranked in the college division. 

“Nathan does a really good job overall being attentive and accurate with all his hits,” sophomore Nate Kneisteadt said. 


Kylee Niswonger- Field Hockey

Kylee is quite the star on the field when she plays. Following in her sister Megan’s footsteps, Niswonger loves the game of Field Hockey. Playing with the well-known, club Pinnacle, Kylee has excelled since starting in third grade. One of Niswonger’s proudest accomplishments was when her club team won a festival game. In agreement with her other teammates, Niswonger loves the team dynamic at DHS.

“We all like Kylee because she always goes after the ball, and never gives up. She’s also really fun, and gets along with everyone,” senior Marin Waddington said.

Conor Kolka – Cross Country

Conor Kolka has shown current cross country runners that he’s nothing to mess around with. Competing with upperclassmen, Kolka outran several of them and achieved a personal record of 18:24 on a 5K course. According to Kolka, that was his greatest accomplishments this season.

Coming in as a freshman, Kolka knew he wanted to run, but also knew that he would have to manage his time very well. Connor isn’t just involved in cross country but is also in the band. We all know it’s football season, and that also means it’s marching band season. Kolka has band practice every Monday and Wednesday. He plays trombone and all the other players like him.