Football

Athlete of the Week: Keegan Cahill, Newark Charter

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KEEGAN CAHILL, junior, Newark Charter Unified Flag Football

THE PERFORMANCE: Has thrown five touchdown passes in two playoff games to lead the fourth-seeded Patriots into the Special Olympics DIAA Unified Flag Football championship game. Newark Charter will meet second-seeded McKean at 4 p.m. Saturday at Delaware Stadium.

THE TEAM: The Patriots have reached the title game in their first year of Unified Flag Football. “We have a really great partnership with Special Olympics Delaware. So when the idea came out and we saw the other flag football teams that were playing, it was kind of a no-brainer,” Newark charter coach Chris Muscara said. “We have some great Unified athletes, some great Unified partners, and we knew we’d have enough people to get it started.”

THE QUARTERBACK: “I have to call the plays and make sure we have the running backs set up, the snapper set up, and we have a set of 24 plays that we keep on a wrist band,” Cahill said.

THE DISTRIBUTOR: A big part of Cahill’s role is spreading the ball among the three Unified Patriots – Eric Anderson, Donovan Schwartz and Hannah Tressler – along with the other athletes. “We just try to keep everyone involved as much as we can,” he said. “We feel out how the game is going, and we just like to give everybody on the team an equal opportunity.”

THE IMPROVEMENT: McKean is the only team to defeat Newark Charter (5-2). The Highlanders downed the Patriots 26-14 in the season opener on Sept. 20, but Newark Charter was much more competitive in a 44-36 setback on Nov. 1. The Patriots have knocked off Middletown and Caesar Rodney in the playoffs. “In the first game, we struggled a little bit,” Cahill said. “Now I feel like we just mesh together as one.”

THE FRIENDSHIPS: “All the credit goes to Keegan and the rest of the teammates,” Muscara said. “You can see by just watching them interact with our Special Olympics athletes, our Unified partners, other teams and other coaches, they’re getting the most out of it.”

THE CLASSROOM: Cahill said his favorite subject is Chemistry. “I’ve always been pretty good at math, so having math feed into another class helps,” he said.

THE FUTURE: Cahill plans to attend the University of Delaware and study Business.

Send Athlete of the Week nominations to Brad Myers at bmyers@delawareonline.com. Follow on Twitter: @BradMyersTNJ.

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Newark Charter School junior Keegan Cahill poses for a portrait in the locker room at Newark Charter on Monday afternoon.

Newark Charter School junior Keegan Cahill poses for a portrait in the locker room at Newark Charter on Monday afternoon.

Newark Charter School junior Keegan Cahill poses for a portrait in the locker room at Newark Charter on Monday afternoon.

Newark Charter School junior Keegan Cahill poses for a portrait in the locker room at Newark Charter on Monday afternoon.

Newark Charter School junior Keegan Cahill poses for a portrait in the locker room at Newark Charter on Monday afternoon.

Newark Charter School junior Keegan Cahill poses for a portrait in the locker room at Newark Charter on Monday afternoon.

Newark Charter School junior Keegan Cahill poses for a portrait in the locker room at Newark Charter on Monday afternoon.

Newark Charter School junior Keegan Cahill poses for a portrait in the locker room at Newark Charter on Monday afternoon.

Newark Charter School junior Keegan Cahill poses for a portrait in the locker room at Newark Charter on Monday afternoon.

Newark Charter School junior Keegan Cahill poses for a portrait in the locker room at Newark Charter on Monday afternoon.

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