McHenry senior Katelyn Sena rarely has much spare time.
Sena plays basketball and softball for the Warriors, and is an honor roll student who takes honors classes.
Despite having so much of her days consumed, Sena squeezed in a little more last spring. In between school, softball practices and homework, she collected food donations for the FISH of McHenry Food Pantry.
For Sena’s efforts, the city of McHenry honored her with a “Citizen of Character” award in August. Sena felt so gratified with her “solo” food drive that she will do it again this spring.
“I’d like to see if I can do something like that every year,” said Sena, who recently signed with NAIA Trinity Christian College in Palos Heights to play softball. “It’s nice to give back and do something nice for people. It makes you feel good.”
Catherine Sena, Katelyn’s mother, said her daughter had asked the food pantry about helping, but the hours did not fit with her schedule during the basketball season.
“She got in touch with the director and asked if there was another way,” Catherine said. “They gave her the information on the things they needed most.”
Katelyn took it from there, making flyers and spreading the word around at church and school, with her teammates and collecting in her neighborhood.
“I managed my time as much as I could,” Katelyn said. “It probably took about 15 hours. You just have to give the time. I did an hour every couple nights.”
When she was done, she had about 900 food items and some monetary donations. She was surprised in August when the city honored her.
“I didn’t think about an award when I was doing it,” she said. “I got that and I was so surprised and excited. I tried to make a difference, and people recognized me for it.”
Sena plays outfield and middle infield and plays club softball for Diamonds Softball Academy.
Record holders: Cary-Grove swimming coach Rich Schaefer used a meet last week to let four of his swimmers set school relay records for Crystal Lake South.
C-G co-op combines swimmers from C-G, South, Crystal Lake Central and Prairie Ridge. In last week’s meet against South Elgin, Schaefer had Scott and Adam Eibel, Chase Castro and Corey Sheehan swim the 200-yard medley relay, 200 freestyle relay and 400 free relay.
In all three races, the quartet swam faster than old South records and will be recognized in the Gators’ records for those accomplishments.
“That’s the only time we’ve done it this season,” Schaefer said. “We did it once last year. Those four [from South] aren’t the fastest four in those relays in the co-op, but they swam the fastest time we’ve had in that meet.”
They swam the medley relay in 1:46.44, breaking a school record from 1992. The other two records were set last year by most of the same relay teams.
• Joe Stevenson is a senior sports writer for the Northwest Herald. He can be reached by email at email@example.com. You also can follow him on Twitter @nwh_JoePrepZone.