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Athlete of the Week – Austin Freerksen, Byron Bears Football

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BYRON, Minn. (KTTC) -- Byron's Austin Freerksen has it all.

Athleticism, instincts, you name it -- the Bears senior has it. In just one half of the Byron's' opening game, the senior rushed for 198 yards and four touchdowns in a 59-0 win over Albert Lea.

His best attribute might be intangibles -- because he knows who helped him rack up all those yards.

"The big boys up front for sure," said Freerksen. "They were paving the way for me the whole time."

Last season as a junior, Freerksen set the Bears' all-time leading rush record. Now, he's back for more -- and not just for himself.

"Obviously, I want all those records to be mine, but first of all I want to win," he said. "Win games with the team."

Watch Freerksen at practice and it's obvious he's cut from a different cloth.

"It's his work ethic. It's crazy," said Byron Head Coach Ben Halder. "We've all coached them -- the gamers, right? -- he's a practice dude, too. He's full tilt, 100 miles per hour, every rep he takes."

Freerksen might be the best running back in Southeastern Minnesota. He's committed to play in college at Minnesota Duluth.

"I think Duluth has got an absolute steal," Halder said. "We haven't seen his full potential. There's no way. He's going to be amazing."

Like any great player, Freerksen knows he's best served by raising the level of those around him.

"He'll be the first one to tell you our offensive line was the sole reason that we played well on Saturday night," said Halder. "He's a great teammate. He gets that end of it -- that it's not about him on the field, it's about making everybody around him better."

Plus, his recipe for success is not that complex. In fact, it's rather simple.

"Practice 110% every single time you step on the field, and you'll go places you didn't think you could go," Freerksen said.

Byron's Austin Freerksen is this week's KTTC Athlete of the Week.

Mark Poulose

Mark Poulose is a Sports Reporter/Anchor at KTTC.

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