High School Sports Xtra: Kaukauna’s Mau kicking her way through barriers

High School Sports

(WFRV) – You never know if you can until you try. Kaukauna’s Ava Mau has tried her hand a lot of different sports.

“My dad made me play every sport when I was younger before I could pick a sport. I asked him the other day actually, why I couldn’t play football, and he said I tried tackle football and I hated it,” said Ava Mau.

She may not have liked football at first, but with the support of her dad the Kaukauna freshman decided to give football a shot.

“He brought it up to me and we went to do my scheduling for school, and he said maybe you should try out kicking. I was really nervous and then I did it for once, and now I”m all the way out here,” said Mau.

Kicking seemed like a natural fit for the soon to be Kaukauna soccer player, but before she steps on to the pitch for the Ghosts in the fall she’s splitting the uprights for the junior varsity football team in the fall.

Kicking a football or a soccer ball may seem like there’s a lot in common. That doesn’t mean there isn’t a steep learning curve, even for a multi-sport athlete with a strong leg.

“It doesn’t translate as much as you think, because I thought by now i’d be at like a 45 but I can only hit a 30. It’s a lot of fun, and it’s something new. I’d say it’s a lot more difficult than people perceive it as. It is a more difficult thing that everybody says, and tackling too,” said Mau.

Earning the respect of your teammates is the same for any athlete in any sport. It comes down to what you can do on the field. One play helped Ava earn the respect of her teammates, and it wasn’t a kick. It was a potential touchdown saving tackle in a game against Notre Dame.

“The team and the parents went bilistic, which is awesome and it’s a sign of acceptance from the team,” said Mau.

“Yeah, I consider myself one of the guys at this rate. I mean they’re out here every day and it’s really fun because I feel like we’re almsot like a family every day. Every day is a different day and we all accept each other, and we all look at each other almost as brothers. I swear I’m one of them now.”

Being good teammate can also mean finding different ways to get on the field. So, even in her first year of football, Mau is already looking ahead to ways to possibly help her team beyond field goals and kickoffs.

“I don’t know, I guess I haven’t really thought about it. I just want to get a couple of reps in and get some footage, and see what the future holds. Hopefully the team, maybe even do another position or something. I don’t know yet. They asked me to be punter, but I don’t know yet,” said Mau.

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