GRAND RAPIDS — Even though she is just a junior, Kenny Martinson has served as a captain on the Grand Rapids High School girls soccer team for two seasons.
According to Thunderhawk girls soccer head coach Brooke Moses, the midfielder for the Thunderhawks was a tremendous play maker and leader for Grand Rapids this past season despite being just a junior. For the season, Martinson notched two goals and assisted on seven others.
It was for her excellence on the field and in the locker room that Martinson has been named the 2020 All-Iron Range Girls Soccer Player of the Year by the Grand Rapids Herald-Review and the Mesabi Tribune.
“Kenny was a major play maker this year,” said Moses. “She was a second-year captain as a junior and started every game. She also was our only All-Conference player this year from Grand Rapids. In addition, she was Student Athlete of the Month for October at Grand Rapids High School.
“She is an incredible player with great sportsmanship and hard work.”
Martinson said she is excited to have been named the top player on the Iron Range.
“I am really excited to go forward and play next year so this award is kind of a little boost,” said Martinson. “I feel like I had a pretty decent season. I know I could have done better but I am happy with where we finished. We did pretty well this season.”
Martinson played both offensive midfielder and defensive midfielder for the Thunderhawks this season.
“I usually try to set up other players,” said Martinson, who is a goaltender on the Grand Rapids/Greenway girls hockey team. “As a midfielder, one of our main jobs is to help the transitioning between the defensive zone and the offensive zone. I think I can understand the play pretty well and I can help move the ball. I’m not as fast as some of our other players but I keep up with the majority of them.
“This year, we really didn’t know what we were going to have with Covid and we all just made it work with what we had. I think I helped do that.”
Athletics have been “super important” to her while growing up.
“Athletics helped me meet different people and they helped me grow both as a person and as a teammate,” Martinson explained.
Martinson would like to see growth in the team and in her personal performance next year in her senior season.
“For my team, we would certainly like to get past the second round of sections,” she said. “We got past the first round this year.
“Personally, I would like to score more goals but still be able to provide assistance in other areas.”
Martinson said she feels it would be fun to play a sport in college with her first choice being soccer.
Following is the entire All-Iron Range Girls Soccer Team of the Year:
Kenny Martinson, junior midfielder, Grand Rapids; Makenzie Cole, junior goalkeeper, Grand Rapids; Anika Kaldahl, senior defender, Grand Rapids; Abbey Birkey, sophomore forward, Grand Rapids; Ayva Burkes, Hibbing; Ashley Ciochetto, Hibbing; Jolie Stocke, sophomore forward, Mesabi East Area; Laura Holmstrom, junior midfielder, Mesabi East Area; and Hailey Tarr, junior midfielder, Mesabi East Area.