Varsity Kansas

Getting to know Kapaun’s Sydney Kuhn

Kapaun Mt. Carmel foward Sydney Kuhn will be playing volleyball for Notre Dame next year. Photogaphed at Kapaun on Tuesday. (Feb. 12, 2013)
Kapaun Mt. Carmel foward Sydney Kuhn will be playing volleyball for Notre Dame next year. Photogaphed at Kapaun on Tuesday. (Feb. 12, 2013) The Wichita Eagle

Sydney Kuhn

Kapaun basketball

Kuhn, a junior forward, helped lead Kapaun to the 2011-12 Class 5A title and a 14-3 record this season. She is averaging 12.5 points, 5.9 rebounds and is shooting 49 percent. Kuhn has made an oral commitment to play volleyball at Notre Dame.

How has it been carrying the label of defending 5A champions?

“It’s a tough position to be in. You have a huge target on your back, and everyone wants to knock you off. You need to work extra hard and do what you did last year. It’s really important to work together, and it helps that our team meshes.”

You are currently in basketball season while also playing club volleyball. How busy are you?

“I have volleyball practices three times a week for two hours, and then there are tournaments. We have one this weekend, a three-day tournament, in Omaha. We play West (basketball) on Friday and the tournament is in Omaha on Saturday, Sunday and Monday, so we’re leaving the West game and driving to Omaha.

“…It’s hard, but it’s taught me good time management and organization and a kind of choice-making. Do I want to sleep or go hang out with my friends? Do I need to stay home and do my homework? I might need to skip a practice because I have so much homework.”

You have played basketball since you were a tyke, so why did you choose volleyball over basketball for college?

“Actually, it was hard for me to decide between basketball and volleyball for college. Even a couple weeks ago, I was texting my dad saying, as much as I love volleyball, I love to play basketball, too.’ I just had to think, ‘Could I play basketball every single day of my life and not get tired of it?’ I thought the same thing for volleyball. I thought about how I look forward to it every single day and how I look forward to practicing every day. You really have to love it if you’ll play in college. I think I would get tired of all of it in basketball. But with volleyball, I like practicing, playing, sand volleyball, anything about volleyball.”

How close are you and your dad, Eric?

“We are two of the biggest goobers ever. If there’s anything we’ll get serious about, it’s sports. He can go from dad to coach to mentor. It’s all the same. I know he loves me, and I love him, and I don’t know what I’d do without him. He’s helped me and made me better and he supports me in everything…. He will literally say, ‘OK, I’m not being your dad. I’m being your mentor.’ And then he’ll say something. Then, ‘OK, I’m your dad and I support you in whatever you choose, whatever makes you happy.’ ”

So Mountain Dew – original, not diet or Code Red – is part of your pregame?

“If you see me before the game, I will be drinking a Mountain Dew. If it’s a home game, I’ll drink it before I leave home. But Lent (started Wednesday) and I’m giving up pop. It about killed me when I did it last year, but it’s supposed to be hard.”