There’s a quiet confidence to Kesterholt, Times Observer’s Male Scholar-Athlete of the Year

There’s a pleasant confidence in the way that 2017 Youngsville High School graduate Brady Kesterholt carries himself.

It’s the kind of trait that you don’t know exactly how to describe, but you know it once you see it. Coaches and educators alike rave about his leadership qualities both in the classroom and on the field of play – and that’s plain to see as well once you spend a few minutes talking to him.

It’s those to things that, intertwined, make Kesterholt a model student (he graduated top five in his class) and a great athlete (earning all-region honors in basketball his senior season). It’s also one of the reasons he was chosen as the Warren Times Observer Male Scholar Athlete of the Year.

That just tells a part of the story with Kesterholt, however.

He has been involved with Front Line for three years, a program that mentors incoming freshman, as well as Youth Group, National Honor Society and S.A.D.D.

When he thinks about high school, however, he will always go back to his time as an athlete.

“The memories and friendships I made in each sport,” he said when asked what he enjoyed most about being a high school athlete.

It was an athletic career that was well-rounded and impressive.

In football, one can’t help but think back to Week 1 last season, when he took a kickoff back 79 yards for a touchdown in the third quarter of what was a 19-14 victory over Saegertown, raising his arm in the air as he crossed the goal line.

“I’m speechless right now,” he told me after the game. He went on to elaborate, of course, but you could tell how much that moment meant to him. It made it extra-special that it came on his 18th birthday.

On the basketball court is maybe where he excelled the most, playing for his father, Jim.

He helped lead the Eagles to a District 10 playoff appearance his junior year, the first Youngsville boys basketball team in 21 years to do so, and earned the aforementioned all-region honors in his senior campaign.

Not only did opposing teams have to respect his ball-handling ability, but he also was the team’s best perimeter shooter, accounting for over 20 points in multiple games this past season.

On the baseball diamond, he was one of just two seniors to play after classmate Levi Hendrickson went down with an injury. It was there, perhaps as much as any of the sports he played, where his leadership qualities really shined. His patience and maturity was incredibly valuable to such a young team.

He faced adversity in each of those sports, but says he learned valuable lessons from that, which he will take with him as he embarks on his next challenge, Seton Hill University, where he plans to study to become a physical therapist.

“Hard work and determination will get you through any situation,” he said.

That hard work and determination has embodied his time at Youngsville and will serve him well moving forward, with the world at his fingertips.

It’s on to the next chapter and it’s one that he is very much looking forward to.

“The ability to make new friends and starting a new chapter in my life,” he said when asked about what he is looking forward to the most about college.

With his personality, that making friends part should be very easy, and those befriend him will be lucky.