Freeport Falcons Fall Athletes of the Year

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Burke

Burke

Koenig

Koenig

MALE:

JOSH BURKE, Junior-Football

  • Campbell Conference Class C all-star

  • Booster’s Pride and Character Award winner

Burke loves the sport of football and it’s safe to say that football loved him back this fall, as he helped the resurgent Falcons make the playoffs and turn heads in the process.

Burke also plays basketball and baseball, but he calls football his “passion.”

“I love the game more than anything,” Burke said. “I think about it year-round. It’s my top sport.”

Burke started playing quarterback in middle school, but at the high school level, he and his teammates didn’t enjoy much success until this fall. 

Freeport suggested that it was going to be a different year when it beat Poland in the opener, as Burke scored the go-ahead touchdown. He ran for two scores and threw for another TD in a victory over Gray-New Gloucester. In the finale, Burke engineered a 30-point outburst in miserable weather conditions to beat Yarmouth for the first time in program history. That win sent the Falcons to the playoffs where they gave Spruce Mountain a scare before losing, 20-14, despite two Burke touchdown runs.

For the season, Burke ran for 542 yards and eight TDs and passed for 502 yards and two more scores. He also averaged eight tackles a game and had three interceptions as a middle linebacker.

“I was really excited about our season,” Burke said. “We improved a lot. It was great to beat Yarmouth for the first time and make the playoffs. We believed we could win.”

Burke, the youngest of three kids, credits his family for his success.

“My brothers and my Mom are my source of motivation,” Burke said. “My brother Dan (Freeport’s 2012 Fall Male Athlete of the Year) was very successful at football and I learned my work ethic from my brother Andy. I use that to be the best I can be.”

Burke also mentors younger kids. He looks forward to a strong senior season and wouldn’t rule out playing in college if the opportunity presents itself.

The Falcons football program is back on track and Josh Burke, Freeport’s Fall Male Athlete of the Year, is the biggest reason why.

Coach Paul St. Pierre’s comment: “Josh’s value is far more then any stat line. He’s a motivational leader who’s highly committed. Josh helps with our youth games by working the concession stand and is a role model for the younger guys. He shows respect at all times and has a great head on his shoulders. He’s quick and knowledgeable, able to read plays before they happen. Knowing we have him for another year has the team and coaches extremely confident we can carry over this season’s success into next year. It’s a privilege to have him as our quarterback and leader of the team. We are very lucky to have such physical talent combined with a great attitude and high character.”

Prior winners:

2015 Chandler Vincent (cross country)

2014 Chandler Vincent (cross country)

2013 Ben MacMillan (football)

2012 Dan Burke (football)

2011 Jack Dawe (soccer)

2010 James Purdy (football)

2009 Miguel Beckles (football)

2008 Cody Bartlett (soccer)

2007 Jon Klages (football)

2006 Luke Charest (soccer)

2005 Elliott Townsend (soccer)

2004 Jeff Smith (soccer)

2003 Josh Zolla (cross country)

2002 Chris Vigliotta (soccer)

2001 Scott Newell (golf)

FEMALE:

ALEXA KOENIG, Sophomore-Field hockey

  • WMC all-star, second-team

A fateful bus ride as a middle schooler led Koenig to field hockey and the Freeport program became the ultimate winner as she emerged as a special player, helping the Falcons reach the playoffs this fall.

Koenig grew up in Durham and played soccer, but she didn’t love it. In middle school, she had an opportunity to try field hockey, but that meant she had to travel to Freeport and be the only girl from Durham to participate.

“I took the bus to field hockey and it changed my life,” Koenig said. “I love it. I love the energy. I’ve always loved sports. I’m the youngest of five athletic siblings and I want to be like them.”

Koenig made the Freeport varsity as a freshman and this fall, she transitioned to the midfield and became invaluable.

While her stat line was modest (three goals, four assists), Koenig did it all to help the Falcons to a playoff berth. She had a goal in a season-opening win over Gray-New Gloucester and scored twice in a victory over Cape Elizabeth.

“It was a really fun year,” Koenig said. “You could feel the passion. We were a younger team building momentum.”

Koenig also plays basketball and softball for Freeport and hopes to play field hockey in college.

First things first, as she has two more field hockey seasons to turn heads. Alexa Koenig, Freeport’s Fall Female Athlete of the Year, has set a standard of excellence and is still getting better.

Coach Marcia Wood’s comment: “Alexa was our workhorse. Whether she was dodging players or driving the ball down the field, she made the plays. She probably had a part in most of the goals we scored. She’s the type of player that works herself to exhaustion. She’s passionate and determined and she did a great job this year stepping up and being a leader, even if she is just a sophomore.”

Prior winners:

2015 Morgan Karnes (field hockey)

2014 Abby Smith (field hockey)

2013 Livvy Dimick (soccer)

2012 Jocelyn Davee (soccer)

2011 Kayla Thurlow (field hockey)

2010 Lauren Easler (cross country)

2009 Hannah Schuchert (field hockey)

2008 Molly Susla (cross country)

2007 Hannah Schuchert (field hockey)

2006 Molly Susla (cross country)

2005 Kelsey Nichols (cross country)

2004 Lucy Garrec (cross country)

2003 Dani O’Rourke-Suchoff (cross country)

2002 Michelle Peters (field Hockey)

2001 Amy Morejon (soccer)

Sports Editor Michael Hoffer can be reached at mhoffer@theforecaster.net. Follow him on Twitter: @foresports.

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Sports Editor of The Forecaster since 2001. Find detailed game stories at theforecaster.net. I tweet prodigiously at @foresports.