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Longhorn Volleyball and Greyhound Football Players Win AOW

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Cobb Schools' Athlete of the Week (AOW) program is a weekly recognition of a male and a female student-athlete that perform at high levels in their sport, in the classroom, and in their school communities. The program is made possible by support from BSN Sports.

This week's AOW winners come from Kell Volleyball and Pope Football.

Taylor Simmons, Kell, Volleyball

Taylor led the Lady Longhorns' offensive effort with 33 Kills and .258 hitting to help advance her team to the 5A Final Four. She also led the team in aces during two matches against Union Grove and McIntosh. This year's Final Four appearance was the deepest playoff run for Kell since 2008. The Longhorns were unfortunately eliminated from the GHSA tournament in a tie-breaking fifth game against eventual state-champ McIntosh.

"She demonstrates a true passion for the game," said Head Coach Joseph Auriemma. "She loves her teammates and her teammates looked to her for leadership and approval throughout the season. Taylor a 4-year varsity player and has played volleyball since she was in 6th grade and plans to continue after high school. She plays BIG on the court and earned her role as an all-around Outside Hitter this season and was one of our four team captains."

"Taylor’s leadership during the playoffs was evident with her mindset and determination to win. She left it all on the court in a thrilling 5-set match to finish her high school career. Along with the other seniors, she will be greatly missed and they can proudly say they were part of the best volleyball team in Kell history," concluded Coach Auriemma proudly.KellAOW.jpeg

John Stuetzer, Pope, Football

Wide receiver John Stuetzer scored five touchdowns in a 38-0 victory over Johns Creek. He scored two TDs on the ground, two through the air, and one on a kickoff return. He had 62 yards on five carries, and 166 receiving yards with seven catches. He is also considered one of the fastest high school runners in the country with a top speed of more than 21 MPH!

"John has accounted for 17 touchdowns in 8 games," said his coach Sean O'Sullivan. "He has had a great season on the football field. He also excels in the classroom and leads by example on the football and baseball field."

"He is that kid who walks the hall with a confidence that exemplifies his humble competitiveness," agreed Pope Athletic Director Josh Mathews. "He is a multi-sport athlete and his demeanor and desire to compete rubs off on others. Last year, he made a difference on the football field, but he made a name for himself on the baseball diamond and was a major contributor on the Greyhounds state runner-up team. He maintains a solid balance with his academic and athletic success carrying over a 3.1 GPA into his junior year. We are proud to call John Stuetzer a Pope Greyhound!"

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Congratulations Taylor and John! Your successes on the court and the field are inspiring to all those around you and have helped contribute to outstanding seasons at your schools. Well done, Kell and Pope for supporting these exceptional student-athletes!