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Dec, 2021

SVSC's Kelsey Salopek Sweeps Player of Year Honors

While Kelsey Salopek was not the biggest player on the field, she stood tallest this High School season, earning the "Triple Crown" of Player of the Year Awards. 

It started on November 21, 2021, when Kelsey, a Steel Valley High School senior, was named the Moe Rosensteel Player of the Year.  The award, formed by the Kaitlyn "Moe" Rosensteel Scholarship Foundation, recognizes the the most outstanding girls soccer player in WPIAL.  Then, on December 4, 2021, Kelsey was named TribLive HSSN Girls Soccer Player of the Year.  And on December 9, 2021, Kelsey was picked as the Post-Gazette Girls Soccer Player of the Year. 

But the honors do not stop there.  Kelsey was one of only five girls from WPIAL named to the United Soccer Coaches East Region II All-Region team, which covers the Middle Atlantic area.  She was one of only 12 girls from WPIAL named to the Pennsylvania Soccer Coaches All-State team (this was was her second  consecutive All-State nomination).  She also repeated on the All-WPIAL and All-Section teams, as well.  Additionally, the Trib selected Kelsey for its Fab 15 team and the Post-Gazette named Kelsey to its 12-player All-Area team for the second year in a row.

As all the awards suggest, Kelsey had a remarkable senior year to cap off a remarkable career.  She scored 59 goals and tallied 30 assists in 2021, and finished her high school career with 111 goals and 71 assists.  One of those rare players that makes everyone around her better, Kelsey, a captain, led the Steel Valley High School girls soccer team to its first WPIAL girls soccer championship, taking home the A Girls title with a 2-1 overtime win over defending WPIAL champion Greensburg Central Catholic at Highmark Stadium.  Steel Valley then advanced to the PIAA semi-finals, where Greensburg Central Catholic narrowly edged the Ironmen, 2-1, leaving Steel Valley one game short of the chance to win a state title. 

While that loss in the state semi-finals may have ended Kelsey's high school career, it does not mark the end of her soccer career.  Kelsey has signed a letter of intent to play college soccer at Division I Kent State University, where she will attend on an athletic scholarship.  

Kelsey started her path to soccer stardom as a U5 playing for Steel Valley Soccer Club.  The picture with this article is from Kelsey's U5 season.  Kelsey is the player behind the ball (even in team photos she's first to the ball!), third from the right in the front row.  She played four years of SVSC inhouse soccer for Mike Pavlick, Rob Jordan and her father, Tony; approximately six years of SVSC travel soccer for Mike Pavlick, Steve Vinay and Rick Williams; and then graduated to the SVSC high-school aged travel team, coached by Bill Abraham, where she continues to play even this year.  Kelsey also played for Century, beginning her Century career when she was about 11 years old, but even then she continued to make Steel Valley Soccer Club a priority on Sundays.  

Congratulations to Kelsey on a remarkable career, and good luck at Kent State.  You have been a tremendous representative of the Club and we hope for big things from you as a Golden Flash!