• Steve Russo

Athletes of the Month

By Kendall Lang

Kayelin Johansen


Being one of only roughly 100 girls in the state of Idaho who wrestles, Kayelin Johansen (KJ) doesn’t let that take away from her drive to win and improve every single day. As a sophomore at Sandpoint High School, she has been a big participant of the SHS wrestling team along with competing with Team Idaho, Idaho’s National wrestling team.

Although she has two years left in high school, KJ has her sights set on her future. She plans to compete at the collegiate level for wrestling, as she has already been talking with a few coaches about her options. While competing, she will also pursue law and criminal justice, as her grandfather was a police officer. “I would love to honor him and make our world a better place to live in,” she said.

KJ is drawn to wrestling for many reasons, but her overall pull is, as she puts it, “the grind.” It is all about the blood, sweat and tears that you put into the sport you love. “KJ is a hard-working young lady who lives and breathes wrestling,” SHS head coach Jake Stark remarks. “She is a pioneer in the sport of women’s wrestling, which should be a sanctioned sport here in the near future!” And she has been a vocal advocate in Idaho, encouraging the Idaho High School Athletic Association to sanction the sport that she loves.

Some of her most memorable advice is that to win something you have never won, you have to do something you have never done. KJ lives by these words, knowing that she wants to be the champion, both on the mat and off, and “If you truly want to be the best, you have to be doing things no one is doing.”



Ryan Roos

A four-year varsity basketball star, senior Ryan Roos hopes to finish his last Sandpoint High School season with a bang. Last year, Ryan was awarded All-League and was voted as MVP of the Sandpoint Bulldogs squad.

As Ryan’s senior year progresses, his aspirations of going to college and studying business and marketing become closer and closer. He plans to attend a community college in Southern California. “I want to be an entrepreneur because that, I think, is something I will thrive in,” he said.

As many who play a sport know, injuries tend to be some of the biggest challenges. His sophomore year, Ryan broke his foot in an open gym before the season started, which left him out of commission for the majority of the season. Still to this day, he battles weak ankles, but he is persistent with his regimen and continues to play the sport he loves.

Ryan is most drawn to the team aspect of basketball. He enjoys the need to work together as a unit to reach a common goal. “I also enjoy that you have the freedom as an individual player to some extent, but you get to utilize everyone else’s strength to come together and compete.” As a four-year varsity athlete, Ryan has realized the need to have a work ethic is crucial to being a good athlete. As Ryan said, “You can always push through the hard practices, or come back from injuries, or get up for 8am practices on Saturday mornings. A work ethic benefits you for the rest of your lifer. It helps you persevere through the hard times and come out on top.”

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