Dusty Kain makes his own mark


by Amy Hubner

Breaking a school record is a big deal, but being more concerned with the team’s performance before his own individual accomplishments is an even bigger deal to Dusty Kain.

Kain, a senior and Storm receiver, recently broke a school record for the most career receptions with 199.

“It was kind of a bittersweet feeling because we had just lost to Central in a close game that I felt we had the opportunities to win, so it was difficult to celebrate an individual achievement,” Kain said.

With more conference games to come, Kain has the opportunity to break two other school records: the most career receiving yards and total touchdown receptions. Last year Kain had 76 catches, eight of which were touchdown passes.

“I want to finish this season with a better year than I had last year,” Kain said. “I want to make it to the playoffs again because it was an great experience and once you are there anything can happen. I just really want to make the best out of my senior year since this could be the last time I play football.”

Kain raises the bar not only for himself but for the team.

“We have high expectations for ourselves,” Kain said. “We have the talent and determination to be one of the top teams in the conference. All of the teams are tough this year so we aren’t out of the hunt for playoffs yet by any means.”

Head Coach Jay Niemann agrees with Kain.

“We need to learn from our mistakes and move on,” Niemann said. “As a team, if we do everything we are capable of doing, then Dusty will reach all of these records.”

With the spotlight on Kain and his accomplishments, he is managing to keep a level head.

“Right not it’s not as big of a deal as it will be to me when I’m older,” Kain said. “I want to look back on this and say I did something no one else at Simpson has done before, but right now I’m not too concerned with it.”

Kain is also a member of the baseball team. He said the competitiveness of both sports is what drives him toward success.

“I like winning,” Kain said. “If you don’t play to win then what’s the point in playing at all?”

Joining a team sport forces athletes to get to know each other. According to Kain, the bond formed between the team members can affect their performance.

“You’re pretty much with your teammates every day for three months straight during the year, so you become close,” Kain said.

Junior defensive back Nate Sulzner agreed.

“Winning feels good, but it feels better when you share it with people you care about,” Sulzner said.

Trying to improve his own performance while helping the team succeed is something Kain has managed to do well. The team will miss his leadership according to Niemann.

“Dusty is very valuable to the team,” Niemann said. “He is one of those athletes who do you don’t really appreciate all he does for the team until he is gone.”