By Arv Koontz
For The Tribune
Matt McKay played numerous sports growing up, and he wanted to continue to be involved in athletics when he entered Trinity Lutheran High School.
He competed in football for four years at Trinity, played basketball his freshman and senior years, and ran track his junior and senior years.
In track he was a sectional champion in the 110 hurdles, and holds the school record at 15:64.
He was a member of the Crimson Knights football team that advanced to the National Home School Tournament in Florida last fall and brought home the third place trophy.
McKay said the hurdles are his favorite track event, and he attributes his success in the hurdles to hard work.
“Last year my form was kind of shaky, “he said. “I lead with my right leg. My trail leg kept hitting and I felt slower because of that, but I was fast off the landings so that is what got me to the regional last year. I got my leg out better and I’m faster this year.”
He kept busy throughout the season as he also competed in the 100, long jump, and ran in the 4×400 relay where he helped the Cougars set the school record.
McKay said his best jump was 18-feet, 8-inches.
“You’ve got to find your spot and keep that same rhythm in your head,” McKay said. “You can’t change it up or it will mess your jump up. Timing is important.”
The hurdles and 100 come back-to-back in meets.
“I used the hurdles to warm me up for the 100,” McKay said. “I like doing my events and then hanging with my friends. Track is my favorite sport.”
McKay talked to basketball coach Brian Stuckwisch before the season, and decided to join the team.
“We needed players,” McKay said. “We only had one tall guy. I was the second-tallest (6-1) player on the team. They needed someone to play in the post.
“I liked playing down on the blocks. I liked playing against zone the best. It was easier to get open shots. We would cross the lane. We had a bunch of formations where we would cross and confuse the defense and one of us would end up being open.”
McKay said that football was a big part of his high school experience.
“I came to Trinity for the football because football was probably my best sport in middle school,” McKay said. “I liked that it was a program that was starting up.”
The senior played all over the field, including running back, quarterback and receiver on offense, and corner back and linebacker on defense.
“My favorite position was probably running back,” McKay said. “In a couple games I scored three or four touchdowns.”
He said he enjoyed playing the home games last fall under regulation football lights instead of the portable lights they played under in previous seasons.
McKay said practice is key in all sports.
“Practice is very important. If you don’t practice you go out there and you don’t know what you’re doing,” McKay said. “With practice, I know plays and I know the correct formations and I know the technical part. Practice is definitely required to play sports.”
By Arv Koontz