CANFIELD, Ohio (WKBN) – The South Range football team was in need of a kicker this year, so senior Harley Novak decided to try out and the rest is history.
Harley’s first love is soccer, but she’s now a team favorite on the gridiron and also a top-notch student at South Range. Now, she’s also our “Student Athlete of the Week”.
“I try to be very positive,” said Novak. “And make sure it’s just a fun time for everyone.”
Harley is a natural with a soccer ball at her feet. In fact, she grew up playing club soccer year-round. But this year, she’s taken those kicking skills to the gridiron as well. Still, her first love is soccer.
“I’ve played soccer my entire life. I love soccer, it’s probably one of my favorite things ever,” said Novak. “If I pass a ball to [my teammate] and they score, it’s a good feeling because then they feel good and I know that I helped with that.”
Harley is a four-year starter and senior captain for the girls soccer team. She’s pulling double-duty this fall, also serving as the Raiders’ place-kicker. She’s been a natural, going 3-for-3 on field goals and 32-for-35 on extra points. Ultimately, she’s helped the 6-0 Raiders win a conference title and earn the second seed in Region 17.
“Because they’re so good at their jobs, all I really have to do is kick,” said Novak. “Sure, I get nervous, but I get to focus myself for a minute and then if it goes in I get to celebrate with them and it’s fun.”
Off the field, Harley carries a 3.79 GPA and is a member of the Student Council with over 100 community service hours over the past four years. Next year, she hopes to play soccer in college and study exercise science.
“School is always a big part, especially with me wanting to go to college,” said Novak. “I’ve been very lucky for my parents that have been helping me with my grades. It takes a lot of time management and a lot of knowing what you’re going to do when.”