VIENNA, Ohio (WKBN) – Mathews senior Emma Gates is at the top of her game, on and off the field.

“Having the right mindset is definitely key to being where you want to be as an athlete,” says Gates. “It doesn’t matter how athletic you are, whether you’re the fastest player or the best player all on that field, it’s really your attitude and your effort that will take you to where you need to be or where you want to be.”

Gates is a four year letter winner, team captain and First-Team All-Conference player for both the softball and volleyball team.

“I love the competitive aspect of volleyball and softball, both just any sort of sport anywhere where I’m part of a team,” says Gates. “I love leading others and I love being the encourager. And so any sort of way that I can do that, I love to do.”

Gates is also a leader in the classroom. She’s been class president for four years. She’s president of National Honor Society and carries a perfect 4.0 grade point average. Gates ranks first in her senior class and will be valedictorian this spring.

“I’ve always been competitive in academics as well, and I truly think that both academics and sports really do prepare me for life. Trying to push myself to be the best I can be in anything is very important to me,” said Gates.

But her resume is more than varsity letters and good grades. It’s also loaded with volunteer hours, including her work with the Radio Reading Service of Youngstown. Once a week Gates reads and records the news for their visually impaired audience.

“I’ve always loved serving other people,” says Gates. “I definitely have a passion for it and knowing that I can be someone who is there for other people to help them and just encourage them in any way of service is just something I love to do.”

Mathews senior Emma Gates is our Student Athlete of the Week.