Haag, Cavallaro earn top honors
Emmaus senior and center defender James Haag was named the 2017 Lehigh Valley Boys Soccer Scholar Athlete during the annual soccer banquet recently at the Northampton Memorial Community Center in Northampton.
“It’s such a great honor to be named the Frank J. Olszewski Boys Soccer Scholar Athlete for the Lehigh Valley,” Haag said. “I mean, it’s just amazing how there are so many great kids out here. I can’t believe that I got picked for it. There are so many other candidates that were absolutely amazing and I’m very happy to be named with any of those guys.”
Haag was chosen among 38 other candidates.
“I was a little surprised and then when I got up there and they said I was supposed to speak, I think that was the biggest shock of the night,” said Haag. “It was a great feeling when they called my name.”
Haag thanked the selection committee, his parents, his coach, and God.
The Hornets, coached by John Cari, reached the East Penn Conference final and the District 11 final this season.
“All of our highlights were as a team, but the highlights were getting to those finals,” Haag said.
Kaitlyn Cavallaro, a senior defender from Palisades, was named the 2017 Lehigh Valley Girls Soccer Scholar Athlete.
“I want to thank my parents for always supporting me, and my coach [Chris Willman] for supporting me, and my teammates for supporting me in anything I did,” Cavallaro said.
The Pirates also reached the Colonial League final and the District XI final, and lost in the first round of states on the second round of penalty kicks.
Hal Grahn, who is a referee assignor, was inducted into the Lehigh Valley Soccer Hall of Fame.
“After graduating high school, I went into the officiating world,” Grahn said. “I grew up in the projects. I didn’t have a father, but Ken [Woolley] was always there for me. Trust me, I’m a person who’s done it, and it will find you if you work hard at it.”
East Stroudsburg University soccer coach Rob Berkowitz was the guest speaker, who said that what separates good from great is what you do when nobody is watching.
Northwestern’s Jess Williamson and Kevin Slack represented the Tigers at the banquet.
Williamson is a three-year varsity player, was a captain and two time all-league selection. Slack, a three-sport athlete who also participates in track and basketball, was a two-year varsity player who was named honorable mention all-league last season.