Patrick Kunkel has already run more in his high school career, more than most do in a lifetime.
“Seven days a week and sometimes you’re running twice a day,” says Kunkel.
The McDonald cross country and track standout has good reason. He’s the youngest of five boys, all of which have had great running success.
“They’ve set the bar high. They’ve won state championships. They’ve been state runners up before.”
Kunkel has staked claim to those accomplishments too. As a sophomore, McDonald was the track and field state champion. As a junior, the Blue Devils won the cross country state championship. Kunkel’s best individual finish at the state tournament was this past fall when he placed 6th overall in the Division III cross country meet. And, he’s hoping to add one more trophy to the case this spring, and working hard to overcome what he calls the most challenging part of the sport.
“The mental part of it. Really being able to get yourself through different workouts and when your body is telling you no, just getting your mind straight to tell your body yes.”
Kunkel was also instrumental in helping the basketball team to a district runner up finish this season. He has a 3.95 grade point average and is in the running to be one of McDonald’s class valedictorians. He is a member of National Honor Society and Student Council, and is also Senior Class Secretary. Kunkel will continue his running career in college and plans to study pre-medicine.
“Writing a paper or something, that’s probably one of the hardest things. You’re doing homework and you have certain deadlines you have to meet.”
For making all his deadlines and doing so with great success, McDonald’s Patrick Kunkel is our Student Athlete of the Week.