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Valley Sports Report
SAYRE — Waverly senior Kennedy Westbrook was named the 2022-23 recipient of the Valley Principals’ Award here at a ceremony Sunday morning at the Sayre Elks Club.

The award, which was first given out in 1982, is given each year to a three-sport varsity athlete from Athens, Sayre, or Waverly. Not only athletics, but sportsmanship, and citizenship are considered in the award.

“I’m really grateful for the opportunity — just to be nominated is an honor,” said Westbrook. “I’m even more grateful to have been chosen to receive the Principals’ Award.

“I feel really good right now,” Westbrook laughed.

Westbrook, who will be playing Division I soccer at the New Jersey Institute of Technology in the fall, was an all-state soccer player her senior year, and finished her time at Waverly with 50 career goals, and 29 assists. She is the only player in school history to score 50 goals in four varsity season.

On the basketball hardwoods, Westbrook joined the 1,000-point club during her senior season, and finished her career with 1,105 points, which is eighth all-time in program history.

On the track, Westbrook was a standout sprinter, and during her junior year was a member of Waverly’s 400-meter relay team that placed eighth at the New York State Division 2 Championships.

Westbrook, who earned 11 varsity letters (Covid wiped out her freshman track season, or it would have likely been 12) acknowledges she had a lot of help along the way.

“I would like to thank my teammates,” she said. “I wouldn’t have even been nominated if it weren’t for the people surrounding me, and helping me get the accolades.

“I’m really thankful for the teammates who helped me, and made it possible for me to accomplish something like this today,” Westbrook added.

Waverly High School principal Matthew Talada said Westbrook is the epitome of what the school strives for.

“Kennedy was an obvious choice from Waverly High School’s standpoint, and when we got into the room as a committee, she became the clear choice to be the recipient from all of our perspectives,” he said.

“Kennedy not only excelled in every possible way you can as an athlete, but she also did as a scholar, and as a leader in our building.

“What truly sets Kennedy apart, in my opinion as a principal, is not just her accolades in the classroom, and not her accolades on the athletic fields, but the way she interacts with her teammates, and the way she interacts with the student body,” Talada noted.

“She is a leader in every way, and we couldn’t be more proud of her,” Talada added.


Athens’ nominee for the Principals’ Award was Emma Bronson, a standout in cross country, track & field, and basketball.

Bronson was a state qualifier in cross country, and is the school record-holder in the 1,600-meter run. She is a five-time District 4 medal-winner in track & field.

She will continue cross country and track & field careers at Division I Bucknell University in the fall.


IN PHOTO: Waverly senior Kennedy Westbrook. … PHOTO BY TIM BIRNEY.

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