Northwestern Press

Tuesday, August 21, 2018
Abby Chisdak is this year's Northwestern Press Female Athlete of the Year. Abby Chisdak is this year's Northwestern Press Female Athlete of the Year.

Chisdak was big part of two teams

Wednesday, August 1, 2018 by TODD KRESS tkress@tnonline.com in Sports

Postseason play has become a norm for both the Northwestern girls soccer and basketball teams over the past few years. Last season was no different, with both qualifying for the league and district playoffs, and the Lady Tigers’ soccer team earning a spot in the state tournament.

Right at the center of both teams was senior leader Abby Chisdak. She played vital roles in both team’s success in the fall and winter seasons to continue the Lady Tigers’ rich tradition of playoff contention. For her efforts, Chisdak was named the Northwestern Press Female Athlete of the Year.

“I’m very proud of Northwestern as a community and having the support that we get throughout the sports here,” Chisdak said. “It’s such a great atmosphere, and all of the support from the community, coaches, parents and everyone is great. It’s one of the reasons we went so far in both sports.”

In the fall, Chisdak slid into the center back position and anchored Northwestern’s stingy defense on the pitch. Despite playing in the back, Chisdak managed to score seven goals and add six assists.

Northwestern had one of its deepest runs of her four-year career. After being bounced from the Colonial League playoffs, the Lady Tigers defeated Palisades in the District 11 Class 2A championship game. They advanced all the way to the PIAA semifinals, where their season ended against District 1’s St. Basil, 1-0.

“Soccer I think I accomplished a lot,” Chisdak said. “My goal this year was to get as far as I could with my team because there were 11 seniors on the team. We grew up together, and I know we all really wanted to go far as a team.

“I think we definitely all put our best effort out there. I didn’t know where it was going to go honestly at the beginning of the season. I kind of just hoped for the best and hoped we would go really far.”

Northwestern went 10-1-1 in the Colonial League in 2017. Chisdak helped the Lady Tigers to a 40-6-2 conference record over her four years playing soccer.

The Lady Tigers’ hoops team also had plenty of success on the court. Chisdak could be thrown into a variety of positions both offensively and defensively, making her a valuable commodity for head coach Chris Deutsch.

“This was the best year ever I had for basketball in my whole life,” Chisdak said. “The other girls that I was playing with, I’ve been playing with them since I was literally like six. We all wanted it for each other.”

Chisdak didn’t always have the most impressive stats, but her leadership and versatility on the court made her as valuable as any other Lady Tiger. She tallied five points and four rebounds per game.

“For our team, Abby was the ultimate team player,” Deutsch said. “She was willing to do whatever it took to help the team win. Abby’s importance can’t be measured by stats. She was willing to guard opponent’s best offensive players, make an extra pass to set up her teammates, and rebound against bigger players.”

Northwestern qualified for leagues and districts in each of her four seasons, and she helped the Lady Tigers average 17 wins per season over that stretch. The Lady Tigers went 16-2 in the Colonial League this past winter and lost to Tamaqua in the District 11 Class 3A quarterfinals.

Chisdak also threw javelin during the spring track and field season for Northwestern.

While she competed in three sports for much of her high school career, she’ll be focusing solely on soccer moving forward. Chisdak will attend DeSales University to continue her soccer career in the fall.