SPASH’s Kizewski and Menge sign National Letters of Intent
Stevens Point Area Senior High School (SPASH) seniors Victor
Kizewski and Justice Menge signed National Letters of Intent Wednesday, Feb. 3,
to continue their athletic careers in college.
During a ceremony in the SPASH South Commons, Kizewski
officially committed to play football at NCAA Division 1 Football Championship
Subdivision (FCS) North Dakota
while Menge will play for the women’s soccer team at NCAA Division II Winona
State University (Minn.).
“It’s been great, getting my coaches, my family here and all
of my friends,” said Kizewski. “Committing is something I’ve wanted to do for
the last three years, so it feels great to get it done with, and I’m going to
be ready for next year.”
“It really didn’t hit me until third hour ended and then I
was nervous,” said Menge. “But when I got down here, I just got really excited
and happy to be signing and finally be sealing my fate for the next four
Kizewski broke into the lineup for the SPASH football team
at wide receiver during his sophomore season, and then took on an expanded role
as a junior in 2014.
Kizewski played running back (612 yards rushing and four
touchdowns on 96 carries) and wide receiver (17 catches for 337 yards and three
touchdowns), while he led the Valley Football Association (VFA) South Division
in kick returns (seven for 190 yards, 27.1 average) and was named Second Team
All-WFA South Division at wide receiver and Honorable Mention All-VFA South
Division at running back.
Last fall as a senior, Kizewski spent time at quarterback,
running back and wide receiver, as he rushed for 769 yards and 14 touchdowns on
52 carries (14.8 yards per carry) as SPASH finished 8-3 and advanced to Level 2
of the WIAA Playoffs, where the Panthers fell 48-17 to eventual WIAA Division 1
State Champion Kimberly with Kizewski unable to play due to an injury.
He went on to be named Honorable Mention All-State by the
Wisconsin Football Coaches Association as an all-purpose player, Unanimous
First Team All-VFA South Division at running back and as a return specialist,
Second Team All-VFA South Division at wide receiver, the VFA South Division Offensive
Back of the Year and the VFA South Division Offensive Player of the Year.
“In all of my years of coaching here, I’ve never had a more
dynamic offensive weapon than Victor,” said SPASH football head coach Pete
McAdams. “And I think that was evident by how we used him on the offensive side
and trying to get the ball and keep the ball in his hands, playing quarterback,
playing some running back, playing receiver, kick returning, punt returning.
“And I also I think it’s a testament to him on the accolades
that he got in our conference,” he said. “It’s pretty cool, and it’ll probably
go unmatched for a long time.”
While looking at colleges, Kizewski also considered NCAA
Division II schools Minnesota State University-Mankato and Minnesota-Duluth and
NCAA Division 1 Northern Illinois University before he chose NDSU, which has
won five FCS National Titles in a row, a record for any level of college
“It came down to the coaches there, I really felt connected
with them,” said Kizewski. “And the winning tradition they have is unlike any
other place, so I wanted to come in and win games and just contribute as well
as I can.
“The fact that they’ve won the last five and knowing that
we’re going to be able to contend each and every year is a great feeling,” he
said. “So I’m really excited.”
While Kizewski played all over on the offensive side of the
ball at SPASH, he is expected to convert to defense at NDSU and play safety.
“That will be another new challenge, but I think SPASH
really prepared me for what’s to come,” said Kizewski. “(NDSU head) coach
(Chris) Klieman had me in already on the white board when I went in on my
“Safety’s one of the toughest positions to learn, but I feel
confident I’ll be able to get it done,” he said.
“He’s a strong kid, he’s a physical kid and he can run,”
said McAdams. “So any time you have those three things alone, it’s a lot to be
“We used him so much on offense and with the ball, that that
was one area where we just didn’t experiment with, and that also says a lot
about his teammates here, that we have a lot of other kids that we believed in
who could do some great things for us defensively, and
not have to play him there (too),” he said. “But that’s one of those big
challenges that he’s looking forward to, the ability to showcase what he can do
on the other side of the football.”
Menge earned a starting role at sweeper on defense for the
SPASH girls soccer team as a freshman, when she was named First Team
All-Wisconsin Valley Conference (WVC).
She earned First Team All-WVC honors again as a sophomore in
2014, and then moved to offense last spring as a junior, and was a Unanimous
First Team All-WVC selection at forward after she finished third in the
conference in goals (11) and scoring (26 points).
When considering playing in college, Menge was sold when she
made her visit to Winona State, where former SPASH standout Abby Bohanski led
the team in scoring last fall as a freshman.
“When I went for the campus tour, just with (head coach Ali
Omar), when I stepped on there, and it was gorgeous,” said Menge, who plans to
study pharmaceuticals. “I felt at home.”
Following her senior season with the SPASH girls soccer team
this spring, Menge expects to have a chance to play right away for Winona State
as a freshman in the fall, and is excited for the opportunity to continue her
athletic career in college.
“I’ve been playing since I was six, and being able to go on
and play is very exciting and very humbling for me personally, because I know
that I would miss it,” said Menge. “It’s such a big part of my life, and I
couldn’t imagine it without it.”
Menge also thanked her parents Paul and Serena, while
Kizewski thanked his parents Marty and Kelly for all of their help.
“They love me and they were OK with wherever I went to
school,” said Kizewski. “They were with me all the way.
“I’ll be pretty far away, but football’s what I love to do,
and they’re OK with that,” he said.
“My parents played a big role, and they drove me everywhere,”
said Menge. “For a while I went to a lot of out of state tournaments for ODP
(Olympic Development Program) and to get recruited, and they paid for all of
that, and that’s not an easy thing to do for a family of five, so I really am
appreciative of them.
“I played a lot out of state and they never had a problem
with it, they were like, ‘if you want to do it, we’ll go,’ and they were always
very supportive and they pushed me to be better,” she said. “When we had a
tough loss, they always just comforted me and said ‘think about what you
could’ve done better and just do it,’ and it just helped to push me to be a