Here’s this week’s athletes of the week that appeared in today’s (10-4) paper.
A.J. Wilson, Curtis
Wilson did more in one game than many players do in a season. Despite dislocating his shoulder the week before, the senior running back/defensive back scored six touchdowns and racked up 409 yards of total offense. Wilson ran for three touchdowns, caught two touchdown passes and returned a punt for a score. He almost had a seventh, just missing out on an interception return for a touchdown.
Have you ever scored that many touchdowns in a game before?
Not in high school, but I did when I was younger and playing for the UP Little Viks. One game I had like 11, and I had eight in a game a couple times.
Were you one of the little guys on the field back then too?
Actually, I was bigger than everybody back then, I’ve pretty much been the same size since seventh grade. I’ve just gotten stronger.
You realize you could have had seven TDs with that interception?
Yeah. My right shoulder was bothering me and I didn’t know if I wanted to stretch out there. I still wanted to make a play so I just knocked it down. You’re making me want to go back and pick it off.
Describe what it feels like to dislocate a shoulder?
Oh man, it’s horrible. When it’s popped out it hurts, there’s like a pressure on it. It was so painful. I was screaming for a little bit.
Did it hurt when they put it back in?
When they put it back in felt better, all that pressure was gone. I was trying to get the coaches to put me back in game.
Were you sore on Saturday after Friday’s game?
I was a little, but not too much. It was just from moving it a lot.
Do you ever get made fun of being short by your teammates?
Not really, sometimes they tease me a bit about how much bigger their feet and hands are.
What advantages are there for being smaller?
Oh there’s a lot. If I could just run behind the line, it’s hard for the defense to see me. I just get out and go. I kind of like it.
How many things have to go right to return a punt for a touchdown?
A lot. I just tell everybody, if they can get a shoulder pad on somebody and maintain their blocks then I’ll get in there.
What song is your playing on your iPod right now?
It would probably be a song by Lil’ Wayne. I like the song "The sky is the limit." I listen to it before every game. I have to have my Wayne, it’s a must.
Name a player you like to follow on football field?
Probably, Reggie Bush. The way he can cut at the speed he’s going it’s crazy. At school, some people call me "Lil Reggie." I just love the way he can make people miss, that’s what I try to do. And he’s always helping the team in different ways like running receiving, returning kicks, that’s what I like.
Is there anything worse than practicing in the rain?
For me it doesn’t bother me. I can practice in rain no big deal, as long as I’m on the field. Last week when I wasn’t on field it was killing me. I was like, ‘Coach, I gotta have pads on.’ I don’t like being off the field.
It’s been a year of new coaches, how has the adjustment been?
It’s not really that big of a deal.You just have to adjust. For us, we’ve only had one year at high school without Coach (Clay) Angle. And he coached us in junior high. I wouldn’t have wanted them to have chosen anybody else. He’s just hardnosed football guy. That’s the way he wants us to play. I don’t mind that at all.
You and quarterback Chad Rasmussen both play on the hoops team. Can Chad block one of your shots?
Oh yeah, he probably has a couple of times. He’s a great basketball player besides football.
Can you block one of his shots?
No, but I give a hard body shots a couple of times. I probably only get up as high as his elbow, but he’s not as beefy as me and I’ll use that to my advantage.
Brooke Nelson, Cascade Christian
Nelson is a big reason why the Cougars volleyball team is a perfect 9-0 this season. In last weeks’ 3-2 win over Cedar Park Christian, Nelson, just a junior, put up ridiculously good numbers — 34 kills and 43 digs. The Cougars, who made it to the 1A state tournament last year, should make a run again this year as one of the top teams in the Nisqually League.
Did you know you were having such a monster game?
Actually I didn’t. I was just so in the moment and just focusing on playing. It was probably the best game I’ve ever played.
How important is team chemistry to volleyball?
It’s extremely important because it’s played in such a small area. If one person’s down it’s going to bring the other people down.
Which is a better feeling a booming kill or a stuff block?
I’m going to say the kill because you aren’t doing it by yourself. For a good kill, you have to have to good pass and a good set and every component of the team. For a block, you’re getting it just by yourself.
Do you ever talk trash after a big kill or a block.
Not usually (followed by giggles. It depends what kind of mood I’m in.
There seems to be a lot of emotion in volleyball, what’s it like on the floor after a big play?
You all come together and you cheer really loud and really excited for that person.There’s a lot of emotions. There’s a lot of screaming and lot of yelling.
Do you have set cheers for every good play in volleyball?
It depends, most of the time we do. We’ve have them for the past three years, so they’re basically the same.
Have you ever hit someone in the face with a spike?
Yes. I felt really bad when I did it actually.
Does it hurt to dig a hard spike?
Not really. It probably does at the beginning of each season. Once you get used it to it stops because your arms get used to it.
What song is playing on your iPod right now?
Probably, "How great is our God." I’m actually listening to CD in my car right now.
What’s one TV show can’t miss?
Does every teenage girl watch "The Hills?"
Yeah, I think so. It’s like the best show ever?
Team Heidi or Team Lauren?
If you had to watch one movie over and over, what would it be?
"A Walk to Remember." I’m a girly girl. It’s a chick flick. It’s so sad though.
I’m sure the Notebook would be runner-up?
Yes it would. That’s good too.
Can you make a guarantee to be back at state this year?
Not really, it’s a different tournament to get in this year, but we have a good chance. But you have to play really good in that tournament to make it actual state tournament.
What’s the best thing going to smaller school like Cascade Christian?
You get to know every one, and you know a lot more people at your school and close to those people. The teachers also get to know you better than in a public school because there’s not so many people in your class.
What’s your thoughts on wearing the tight spandex shorts for volleyball?
I like them if they’re long enough, but if they’re too short, they’re uncomfortable to play in.