ATHLETE OF THE WEEK: Valley West’s Karaline Stelma
Valley West senior Karaline Stelma rose to the occasion in the PIAA field hockey quarterfinals, scoring the game’s lone goal for the Spartans to advance past Bangor in Class 2A action.
For her achievement, Stelma was named The Citizens’ Voice Athlete of the Week.
Can you describe how that goal was scored?
Just great team passing. Emily Latoski hit it on, and I got a touch on it, pulled around the goalie and shot it.
Did you think it was only a matter of time before someone scored?
We were kind of anxious. We just really wanted to put one away and score to get that going and get the win.
Does it give you more confidence being on a team with such a great defense?
Our defense is one of the biggest parts of our team. The defensive line and goalie (Sydney Rusnock) made sure the other team wasn’t able to score. It really helped us out.
Is this year’s state playoff run any different from last year’s?
It’s not much different. We lost five starters, so there are different people on the field. But it’s still the same components, the key passing, same stuff we have to get done.
What kind of performance do you think the team needs to get back to the state final?
We need a big performance. We’re playing a really good team, so we have to try to score early and put it away.
This is your senior season. What has playing for Valley West field hockey meant to you over the years?
It’s meant a lot. I wouldn’t be where I am without all my coaches and teammates. They’ve shown me what it means to be a team player, and having them all behind me is one of the best things.
Getting to Know Karaline
Family: Parents Ami and Bob, sister Emilee
Favorite subject in school: Physics engineering
Favorite TV show: “S.W.A.T.”
Favorite music artist: Nicki Minaj
Favorite food: Pizza
Favorite sport as a fan: Football
Favorite sports team: Seattle Seahawks
Favorite athlete: Russell Wilson
If Karaline could go anywhere in the world, she would go to ... the Bahamas.
Karaline’s favorite thing about playing field hockey is ... being around her teammates all the time.
For Karaline, the most difficult thing about playing field hockey is ... sometimes we can’t control the game; it’s in the refs’ hands.
Karaline’s biggest role model has been ... her aunt Kristine.
One word to best describe Karaline is ... funny.
Up next, Karaline will compete in the state semifinals Tuesday against Palmyra. She also competes in basketball and track & field for the Spartans and will continue her academic and field hockey careers at Lock Haven.