Female Finalists For 2021 Roundup/Sidney Kiwanis Club's Athletes Of The Year Award

Top athletes in track, hockey and basketball are among the female finalists for this year’s Roundup/Sidney Kiwanis Club’s Athletes of the Year award.

The awards will be announced during the Kiwanis meeting on June 24.

The finalists include:

Jaylen Baxter: Baxter was a three-sport athlete during her high school career. As a leader for the Richland Rangers, she was an All-State selection in hockey. As a senior, she placed 96th at Class A state cross-country meet. As a senior track standout, Baxter qualified for finals in javelin at Class A state track meet.

Jadyn Gackle: Gackle has been a standout in three sports during her career in Fairview. She earned All-State honors in volleyball as a senior when she led the Warriors to their first ever Class C state volleyball berth. She received All-Conference recognition as a junior for basketball. As a sophomore, Gackle placed second in shot put and third in discus at Class C state track meet. She earned state championship in shot put and placed second in discus as a senior.

Hadley Garsjo: Garsjo enjoyed success in hockey, volleyball and softball during her high school days. She earned All-State recognition as a junior and senior for Richland Rangers. She was a strong shortstop for Sidney’s softball team and a standout for the volleyball squad. In addition, she was a state placer for Sidney Tiger Sharks’ swim team.

Sarah Karanjai: Karanjai helped Sidney’s girls’ golf team place second at Class A state meet last fall. She earned All-State status by placing seventh at the state meet. She also placed seventh as a junior when the Eagles took fourth in the team standings. She was a member of Sidney’s 2017 state championship squad.

Ali Merritt: Merritt has excelled in track and basketball for the Sidney Eagles. Merritt earned fifth place in discus as a sophomore at Class A state track and field meet. As a senior, Merritt placed third in discus at the state competition. She has been a top player for Sidney’s girls’ basketball program throughout her career.

Alexia Papka: Papka has been a multi-year starter for Savage’s volleyball team and girls’ basketball squad. As a sophomore, Papka was a valuable contributor off the bench as the Warriors placed fourth at Class C state girls’ basketball tournament. As a senior, she helped Savage earn a berth to the divisional basketball tournament. She was part of Savage’s 1600-meter relay team that placed sixth at Class C state track meet.

Taylor Stewart: Stewart was a steady performer for both Sidney’s volleyball team and Richland Lady Rangers. Her volleyball play has led to an opportunity to play at the collegiate level. Stewart was Sidney’s top long jumper as a senior and part of both relay teams. She has provided leadership for programs throughout her career.

Emily Sundheim: Sundheim enjoyed an excellent senior season for Fairview Warriors. She earned All-Conference second team honors in volleyball as the Warriors went to Class C state tournament for the first time in school history. She then received second team All-Conference honors as a standout basketball player for Fairview.


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