The Schuylkill County Women's Athletic Association held its 29th Annual Female Scholar-Athlete Banquet on Sunday, April 14, 2013 at Pine View Acres in Pottsville.
Three TIMES NEWS area athletes were honored at the ceremony.
Biographies of each follow below.
Sam Zlock, Panther Valley
Samantha Zlock, daughter of Thomas and Pamela Zlock is Panther Valley's 2013 Female Scholar Athlete.
Zlock ranks second in her class of 86 and is a member of the Panther Valley Chapter of the National Honor Society and Student Forum.
Zlock works a part time job at Northeast Pharmacy Services in Lehighton and as a babysitter. She volunteers for the Carbon-Tamaqua unit of the American Cancer Society, the Nesquehoning Recreation Center, the Linda Huyunh Memorial Fund, Saint John's Slovak Lutheran Church and shoveling snow for the elderly. She has also raised money for the Panther Valley School District for the purchase of a scoreboard for the softball field.
"Samantha Zlock is an unselfish, hard working student athlete. Her positive contributions to Panther Valley High School have gained her recognition and respect on and off of the athletic field," said Panther Valley Principal Joe Gunnels. "Samantha is a self-assured, quiet leader who has been en exemplary role model in athletics and academics. As a two-year member of the national honor society she consistently performs at the top of her class. She has excelled in girls' basketball and softball for four years and has been selected as a team captain in both sports. The Panther Valley athletic complex benefitted from Samantha's hard work and unselfish efforts when she raised over 5,000 dollars toward the purchase of a state of the art scoreboard for the softball field. She is the consummate team player that includes the entire Panther Valley community."
Samantha plans to attend Temple University and major in pre-pharmacy.
Caroline Kanaskie, Tamaqua
Caroline Kanaski, the daughter of Paul and Renee Kanaskie of Tamaqua is Tamaqua Area School District's 2013 Scholar Athlete.
Kanaski ranks 4th in her class of 159 with a 97.2 grade point average and with scores of 640 reading, 650 math and 620 writing on her SATs.
Kanaski has been a four year member of the Blue Raider swim team where she has been a four time letter winner. In her sophomore year she was Schuylkill League champion in the 50 yard back stroke. As a junior she broke the school record in the 200 freestyle, was part of the league championship teams in the 200 medley relay, 400 free relay and 200 freestyle relay, took the silver medal at the District 11 meet in 100 freestyle and bronze as a member of the 200 medley relay as well as qualifying for the PIAA state meet. This year she was a member of the league champion 400 free relay team and was league silver medalist in the 200 freestyle. In her final meet for the Blue Raiders', she recorded her 1000th career point.
Kanaski has also been voted to the Schuylkill League Swim All-Star Team. She was a varsity letter winner in track and a member of the girls' tennis team during her sophomore year. Additionally she is a member of the Tamaqua Area Student Government Association, The National Honor Society, Spanish National Honor Society, Physics Club, Leadership Council, Media Club and Tamaqua Blue and White Magazine. She is president of the Science National Honor Society, Secretary of the Biology Club and Senior Class Treasurer.
Kanaski spends some of her free time as a volunteer with the Blue Waves Youth Swim Program, the Hazleton YMCA swim team mentor and as an Irish dance teacher at McCormick School of Irish Dance for the past seven years. She also created a recycling club and volunteers in cleaning up community parks.
"Caroline is a dedicated, driven and distinguished student who shows concern toward others," said Tamaqua high school principal Stephen Toth.
Caroline plans to attend college and major in environmental engineering.
Samantha Faust, Marian
Samantha Faust, daughter of Mary and James Faust, is the 2013 Marian Catholic High School Female Scholar Athlete.
Faust is ranked in the top 2% of her class at Marian Catholic High School and is a member of the National Honor Society and the Spanish Honor Society. Samantha has attained honors for each marking period since her freshman year.
Faust is Treasurer of Student Council and has been a member of the Green Club, Yearbook and Phone-a-thon. She has been a Student Ambassador, peer listener and Eucharistic minister. Faust is a member of the Future Business Leaders of America where she has been a four year state qualifier and a one year national qualifier. Additionally, she is a member of the Chorus and Rock Music Ministry where she shares her talent at weekly liturgy.
Faust has lettered on the basketball and softball teams for four years. She was the captain of both the basketball and softball teams this year.
In her community, she is very involved in basketball and youth camps. She has been a dance instructor and has performed at nursing homes, telethons and other community activities.
"Samantha is a well-rounded student who gives 100% to whatever task she undertakes be it athletics, scholastics, community projects or witnessing to her Catholic faith," said Marian Principal Sister Bernard Agnes "Her willingness to help out and her pleasant personality brings joy to all those with whom she comes in contact."
Faust hopes to attend either Villanova or Northwestern University, majoring in journalism/communications.