Jehn, Karpinski recall last year’s regional championship

By Jason Arndt
Staff Writer

Quentin Jehn

Southern Lakes Newspapers plans to recognize senior student-athletes who participated in spring sports.
The seniors from Waterford and Union Grove will be profiled in the next several weeks as more seniors respond to questions via email.

Southern Lakes Newspapers reached out to readers on social media, contacted athletic directors and student-athletes themselves for suggestions on who to profile.

Coaches, senior student-athletes, parents and athletic directors are welcome to send further recommendations to jarndt@southernlakesnewspapers.com

Waterford’s Quentin Jehn and Hunter Karpinski each shared a similar memory while playing on the same baseball team.

The two seniors, who saw their seasons canceled, agreed the Wolverines’ WIAA Division 1 regional championship against Bradford last year was a phenomenal come-from-behind victory.

Both shared more memories as part of Southern Lakes Newspapers’ mission to recognize senior student-athletes playing spring sports.

Quentin Jehn
Quentin Jehn, named to the Southern Lakes Conference first team last year, started playing organized baseball when he was six years old at the coach pitch level.

While he mostly played third base as junior, Jehn said he was willing to play anywhere coach Lance Bestland put him, and once played five positions in a doubleheader.

“My favorite position is catcher and I would have caught for the majority of this season,” he said. “In a doubleheader last year, I played right field, left field, second base, third base and catcher.”

Jehn, meanwhile, said his fondest memory came during the WIAA Division 1 regional championship with Kenosha Bradford.

The Wolverines, seeded seventh, defeated the second-seeded Red Devils.

“We were underdogs going into that game and were down 4-3 in the top of the seventh. Kyle Huckstorf, Andrew Chapman and Boyd Biggs hit back-to-back-to-back home runs with two outs to put us up.”

His junior season also brought many more moments he will cherish, and had hopes of having a senior season, noting the team had a strong bond.

“It was a lot of fun my junior year to play with some of my older friends. I was really looking forward to this season and getting to play with my friends that I grew up playing with, or against,” he said. “Getting that taken away really crushed me.”

Jehn, meanwhile, said he loved the camaraderie and acknowledged he missed a team trip to Florida at the beginning of the season.

“I missed the trip down to Florida at the beginning of the season, but I didn’t miss a beat gelling with the guys,” he said. “I was surrounded by a bunch of guys who loved to have fun and had a strong desire to win.”

Jehn plans to attend Division 3 Grinnell College where he will study mathematics and computer science.

Hunter Karpinski

Hunter Karpinski

Hunter Karpinski, a multi-sport athlete, plans to attend University of Dubuque for aviation management and join the basketball team.

However, he has played on the baseball diamonds for a number of years, and doesn’t recall when he first picked up a glove.

“I have played baseball my whole life, ever since I can remember,” he said.

Karpinski, the Wolverines’ starting shortstop as a junior, shares a memory similar to Jehn.

“My biggest highlight was when our team won regionals last year and on back-to-back-to-back home runs,” he said.

The team chemistry, he said, is what he loved most about Waterford.

“I loved our chemistry on the team. We play well together and have fun playing together,” said Karpinski, who acknowledged a canceled season has been difficult.

“What I will miss most is playing on the home field. The field I grew up dreaming to play on,” he said. “It’s hard to take in that I might never have my senior season and get a chance to prove myself.”

Karpinski and Jehn each remain hopeful their team will come together to play at least one game during the 30-day window in the summer, which was approved by the WIAA Board of Control.