Sunday, September 20, 2020

Sports Person of the Week

Orlowski Protects the Net as Westbrook’s Sweeper


Senior captain Kendall Orlowski is leading a staunch defense for the Westbrook field hockey squad while playing the sweeper position for the Knights.

Photo courtesy of Kendall Orlowski

Senior captain Kendall Orlowski is leading a staunch defense for the Westbrook field hockey squad while playing the sweeper position for the Knights. (Photo courtesy of Kendall Orlowski )

As Kendall Orlowski enters the middle of her final season with the Westbrook field hockey team, she’s already thinking ahead to a future in dental medicine at Boston College next year. In the meantime, Kendall plans to continue using a surgical approach to stifle her opponents as a defender for the Knights.

Kendall, a senior captain, anchors the defense while playing the sweeper position on a Westbrook team that has only allowed three goals this season. As the sweeper, Kendall serves as the last line of defense for junior goalie Lauren Horne.

“Lauren is an amazing goalie,” says Kendall. “It’s my job to protect her, to keep the other team’s offensive players away from our net.”

Kendall came into this year with plenty of varsity experience. As a freshman, she helped Westbrook claim a share of the Class S title with Haddam- Killingworth after the two teams battled to a 1-1 tie in the state final. Kendall started playing field hockey in middle school and has become immersed in the sport throughout her time with the Knights.

“I’ve played tennis and ran track, but once I got to high school, field hockey overwhelmed me,” Kendall says. “I’d play it every day of the week if I could and go year-round.”

Head Coach Janet Dickey sees Kendall’s dedication to the game on an everyday basis. Dickey says that having Kendall on the team is like having another coach on the field.

“Kendall brings an intensity and a desire to play the game that a coach can’t teach her. It’s an innate feeling for the game,” says Dickey. “She’ll make switches out on the field, then look at me for confirmation. I’m usually good every time she does it.”

The Knights are off to a great start to their season with a record of 6-1-1. Kendall feels optimistic about what Westbrook can accomplish during the 2019 campaign.

“We sure want to get back to states. We haven’t missed it in my three seasons,” Kendall says. “Right now, we’re trying to fit all of those pieces together in the puzzle. We’re a young team with younger players up front. They’re all stepping up. I like the pattern I’m seeing.”

Kendall is serving as one of Westbrook’s captains alongside fellow seniors Olivia Hartzell, Alex Young, and Lexi Koplas this year. With the senior leader standing her ground in front of the cage, Kendall and company have notched six shutouts on the season so far.

Kendall was an All-State Second Team selection last year, while Horne earned First Team honors for her performance in goal. Together, they have helped make the Knights one of the top defensive squads in the Shoreline Conference.

“We’ve always prided ourselves on being strong defensively,” Coach Dickey says. “Kendall already has two goal-line saves this year.”

Kendall’s talents go beyond field hockey. This winter, Kendall will be a player in the school’s production of It’s a Wonderful Life. She’s also planning on performing in the musical, The Little Mermaid.

“I didn’t have anything else planned for the winter, so I said, ‘Why not?’” says Kendall. “It will keep me busy.”

Kendall has a younger brother Tanner, and she also gets a lot of support from her parents, Darcie and Alec. One of the reasons why Kendall wants to go to Boston College is because her family likes to spend time in Beantown cheering on the Red Sox and Celtics.

“I’m looking forward to it,” Kendall says. “I can already envision spending four years in that amazing city.”

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