WC’s Hisler recognized for academic prowess

File photo: Webster City senior Keegan Hisler runs the ball against Creston in a Class 3A quarterfinal game.

Keegan Hisler considers his 2023 Iowa Bankers Association Student Athlete Achievement Award a collective accomplishment, shared with his family, friends and the entire Webster City community.

The Lynx senior was recognized last week for his efforts as an elite-level student-athlete. Hisler, the Class 3A recipient for football, was presented a $1,000 scholarship from the IBA to the college of his choice.

“All of the people in my life are to thank for the award I received,” said Hisler, a two-time first team all-district performer on the gridiron. “They all work as hard as I do to complete what they need to, and I used that as an example and executed that on the football field and inside of the classroom.

“My parents (Chad and Jama) also taught me from a young age that my education is the most important thing throughout my life, so I took that information to heart and made sure I always had excellent grades in school.”

Hisler was one of seven Iowa high school student-athletes honored at the state championships at the UNI-Dome in Cedar Falls. The IBA stated, “Scholarship recipients are selected each year based on their academic performance, athletic participation, leadership skills and community involvement.”

Hisler said he was “surprised” when he found out he was the 3A honoree.

“The award means a lot to me,” said Hisler, who currently carries a cumulative 4.0 grade point average. “I was able to represent Webster City through it, and my football team as well.

“The culture and competition within Webster City athletics is great. Specifically in football, the team is pretty much like a second family. Everyone supports each other, and everyone on the team spends a lot of time together.”

Hisler took the lessons learned from head coach Bob Howard, his staff, and so many former teammates to heart, helping the Lynx win eight games while again advancing to the 3A quarterfinal round earlier this month. His older brother, CJ, was a fellow academic standout and the recipient of this award for wrestling just last February.

CJ — a 2023 WCHS graduate — is now a freshman playing for the Wartburg College football squad.

“Through the years, other teams (in Webster City) have displayed what leadership looks like, and I took that knowledge and implemented it in my own way (this fall),” Keegan said. “In my opinion, leadership is an acquired trait, so I felt obligated to teach the underclassmen how to lead through my actions as well.

“The most important thing I’ve learned is how to handle myself under pressure and stress. If I told the middle school version of myself that I was going to be the starting quarterback for the Webster City Lynx, he might pass out due to the anxiety.”

Hisler believes a balance between taking school seriously while enjoying the process is imperative in finding both success and happiness.

“The importance of staying involved in extracurricular activities comes down to socializing and letting yourself be a kid,” Hisler said. “Socializing is definitely one of the biggest parts of being involved in extracurriculars, and you might find someone that you are friends with for the rest of your life in the activity you join. I’ve also played sports since I was a little kid, and I sometimes forget to have fun, so I have to go back and remind myself why I play.

“For someone just getting involved, I would advise them to make a new friend if they don’t have one already on the team, and don’t be scared to try. If you joined the team or club, don’t be scared to try something — you already joined, and that (first step) is the hardest part.”

Hisler knows what he wants to do in college, though the destination is still up in the air.

“I really enjoy Calculus, as strange as it seems. It’s a class of four students total. The class has some difficult aspects about it, and I like to challenge myself.

“In college, I plan to major in biology because I plan on going into medical school. I’m undecided on what college I’m going to attend, but I know that I want to play baseball at the next level.”


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