Sports

Boy with the golden foot: Records falling for Mount Si kicker Cameron Van Winkle

Senior Chase Carlson holds the ball for junior Cameron Van Winkle during practice. Van Winkle, a junior and the varsity kicker since ninth grade, is crushing Mount Si’s school field goal records this season in short order. - Courtesy Photo
Senior Chase Carlson holds the ball for junior Cameron Van Winkle during practice. Van Winkle, a junior and the varsity kicker since ninth grade, is crushing Mount Si’s school field goal records this season in short order.
— image credit: Courtesy Photo

Records are falling for Mount Si’s Cameron Van Winkle, kicker for the Wildcat varsity football team.

In the last two weeks, the five-foot-10, 160-pound junior has blown through the career, single-game and season field goal records for the team, also making the furthest recorded kick.

“I feel confident for anything,” said Van Winkle Thursday, Sept. 15, the day before he kicked three against Lake Washington in a 42-0 ‘Cats blowout.

His three successful attempts beat the old season record of seven, jointly held by Dale Ottopal and Jsaon McGregor in 1986 and 1990, respectively. And the year is young.

Combined with his four kicks Saturday, Sept. 10, in Mount Si’s road game against Bothell, the junior is still building a new career record for the team with 15 field goals.

He surpassed the career record set by McGregor during the 1989-1990 seasons. That week, he also beat the Mount Si single game-record; the prior record was three, set by Ottopal in 1986.

The same night, he tied with Brett Evetts’ 1981 record vs. Gig Harbor for longest field goal with a 47-yard kick. Last Friday, that record fell again, as Van Winkle kicked a 49-yarder through the pipes in the fourth quarter.

“I’ve had my eye on the record books since freshman year,” said Van Winkle, who hopes to win a scholarship to his favorite school, Stanford University in Palo Alto., Calif., thanks to his feet.

Van Winkle makes it clear that his success is a team affair. Specifically, he operates as part of a machine with holder and quarterback Ryan Atkinson, a senior, and snapper Beau Shain, a sophomore.

“If one goes wrong, we all go,” Van Winkle said. “Bad hold, bad snap, bad kick, we all go down.”

Van Winkle has always liked the foot action— “Soccer balls, footballs,” but football is his focus. He will play soccer for Mount Si this spring.

To reach this level, Van Winkle has traveled to kicking camps all over the nation during his high school career.

Next January, he attends the Underclassman Challenge camp in Orlando, Fla.

In school, his favorite subject is science. Chemistry is “interesting,” too, Van Winkle said.

• Mount Si hosts Liberty, 7 p.m. Friday, Sept. 23.

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