Of 560 votes cast this past week for The Times Athlete of the Week, 235 were cast for Serena girls basketball standout Katie Baker. The Huskers’ all-state star has picked up right where she left off last season, earning all-tournament honors in the Falcon-Irish Thanksgiving Tournament.
The ballot also included runner-up Ashlyn May of Fieldcrest, Streator bowler Brady Grabowski and Ottawa girls basketball player Ella Marvel.
Next week’s ballot will be online Sunday, with voting going through midday Wednesday.
Here is a Q&A with this week’s winner:
You’re an accomplished multiple-sport athlete — which one is your favorite?
Basketball is my favorite. Softball is close behind. I feel the most confident when I am playing basketball.
Do you have any nicknames?
Baker & KB
How would you describe yourself as a basketball player?
Confident. I feel the most confident when playing basketball. I love getting my teammates involved and being the playmaker.
Who have been a few of your most inspirational coaches?
Coach Jobst has definitely been the most inspirational coach I have ever had. ... He has never taken it easy on me, and it has made me not only a better player, but also a better person. I am the player I am today because of him and owe my success to him. Pat Cinotte has also been a huge part of my game. I gained a lot of skill over the past summers by playing for his Illinois Valley Warriors travel program.
What are your favorite shows to binge-watch?
“One Tree Hill” and “Yellowstone”
What’s your favorite subject in school?
Do you have a go-to meal before a big game? How about to celebrate a big win?
Jimmy John’s slim for a pregame meal. I like celebrating a win with food from Grandma Sue’s house or the Old Mill Tavern.
Who are your favorite musical artists?
Thomas Rhett, Luke Combs, or pretty much any country artist.
What’s it like having two coaches for parents?
It’s hard. I love it, and sometimes I hate it. They have taught my brothers and I how to be respectful on and off the court/field. They do get on us a lot more than any other coach would, but I know it’s because they want the best for us, and I love them for it. My parents have done so much to make me the player I am. They truly are the best parents and coaches, and I’m so grateful for them.