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Avery Evenson is a remarkable student-athlete.

The Hartland Community Schools student scored a first at our newspaper when she was named the athlete of the year in two separate sports in the same season. It’s rare to participate on two sports at once, much less excel at that level.

It’s hard to argue with the selection, though. Evenson was all-state in three events in swimming, setting four high school records. Her cross country results were even more impressive. She placed second in the state in the Division 1 state meet, which is the state championship race for Michigan’s largest schools.

Pretty impressive. But here’s the rest of the story. Evenson is only a freshman. There’s more. Her drive, ambition and dedication haven’t detracted from school. She’s an all-A student.

She deserves the many accolades headed her way. But pause for a second and applaud the maturity and flexibility of her coaches, Maria Puranen in swimming and Mary Rinkus in cross country. Rather than jealously guard their star performer, they worked closely with her family and each other to work out a schedule that allowed Evenson to compete on both teams.

And compete she did, thanks to hard work and good attitudes from all involved.

Categories: Track and Cross News

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