Colten Atkinson’s Journey: From Scoring Goals to Kicking Field Goals 

Stephen Christensen, Staff Writer

There is no doubt when Colten Atkinson steps onto the soccer pitch that he is a scoring threat with a great amount of speed and one heck of a leg. He is a force to be reckoned with, plain and simple. Last year, as a sophomore, Atkinson made his mark by leading the state in goals scored. And by the looks of it, it will only get better from here for the starting striker.

Atkinson decided not only to put his skills to use on the soccer pitch, but on the football field as well. The decision to start playing football came over the summer with the support of both his parents and friends.

The transition from soccer to football can be tough for most athletes because of the different nature of each sport. Soccer is a limited-contact sport requiring great physical endurance because of the constant flow of the game. Football is all physical and features a much different pace of play. But Atkinson largely ignored these differences. 

“Kicking a field goal felt like scoring a goal, so it wasn’t hard for me to make the change of sport,” he said. 

With the football team in need of a strong, confident kicker, Atkinson was well-suited for the job. Although the Trojans were disappointed in their first home start under new head coach Aaron Makelky, a recent win over Cheyenne South has the team headed in the right direction.

“It was hard adapting to a new sport and a new coach because it’s a totally new sport for me,” said Atkinson. “I had a rough start, in the beginning there was a lot of pressure on me  but with practice, I felt more and more confident kicking field goals for my team.” 

Atkinson proved his adaptation to the new sport in his game against South, kicking a 42-yard field goal, and the team taking the win. 

He said, “It felt nice, it showed that hard work pays off.”  

Although the Trojan football team had a rough start to the season, the momentum and energy of the team has improved and with a kicker like Colten Atkinson, the Trojans are heading in the right direction.