Standout athlete headed to UW-La Crosse
By Greg Seubert
There are going to be some big shoes to fill at Weyauwega-Fremont High School later this year.
Make that several pairs of shoes.
Karissa Akey – a standout athlete in volleyball, basketball, softball and track – graduated June 5 and will now take her softball skills to the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse.
She was on the losing end of a 1-0 score to Laconia May 31 in a Division 3 sectional semifinal softball game in Markesan.
She never had an opportunity to compete for a state championship, but that didn’t stop her from looking at the big picture.
“It’s really sad to have this be my last game, but I was happy with who I was able to end it with: great teammates and so many fans to support us,” she said. “It was a good way to go out.”
Not only was Akey a first-team all-conference basketball and softball player as a senior, she also made the all-conference second team in volleyball and placed first in the shot put event at the Central Wisconsin-8 Conference meet while participating in two spring sports.
“This year, regional championship games for basketball and softball were games I’ll remember for the rest of my life,” she said. “Those were just games that we won with pure effort because we wanted them so bad. It wasn’t necessarily that we were a better team, it was because we wanted it more.”
One of Akey’s favorite team moments was knocking off defending Division 4 state softball champion Pacelli May 27 in a regional final.
“Pacelli beat us twice in the season and they’re a great team,” she said. “We know it’s hard for a team to beat a team three times. We gave it everything we had. It was a really fun game with a lot of energy and so many fans to come and watch us.”
The Indians’ momentum from that 4-1 win carried over to the Laconia game as the Indians faced another defending state champion in the Spartans.
“I saw more people at this game than I have all season,” Akey said. “People I know from the community that I’ve never seen at a softball game before are here. It was really fun to see that many people here, that we made it this far and that they’re here to support us. It’s really sad that it’s the end, but I’m excited to start a new chapter in my life.”
That includes playing softball at UW-La Crosse.
“They have a really good program down there and a really good coach,” Akey said. “I’m excited to be a part of something bigger and better. Softball became my favorite sport. I still love all the sports, but somehow, softball snuck to the top. I just love to play the game.”
Todd Breuer coached Akey in softball and is an assistant coach for basketball.
“In 20 years of coaching girls’ athletics, I’ll be lucky to see another kid like that,” he said. “I’m very fortunate I had a chance to coach a kid like that and I’ll remember that for the rest of my life.”