IRWIN — Jen (Manik) Wright, the former head girls soccer coach at Clearfield, is being inducted into the Norwin Area High School Athletic Hall of Fame on Sept. 21.
Manik Wright, who is currently a first grade teacher in the Clearfield Area School District, is being honored for her outstanding soccer and track and field careers at Norwin.
With the Norwin girls soccer team from 1993-96, 1997 grad Wright earned enough accolades to stretch end-to-end from goal to goal on the soccer field.
In those four seasons, she played every position except goalie, and her achievements make it appear she played all three positions at the same time.
She was a four-year starter, four-year letterwinner and a two-year captain. Manik Wright scored 38 career goals (including a team-leading 21 as a junior), had 30 career assists, was a four-time all-section first-team selection, three-time All-WPIAL first-team selection and, as a senior, she received first-team all-state and regional All-American honors.
During her four years with the Knights, she was a member of three section championship teams.
In 1995, her Knights were WPIAL quarterfinalists, and in 1996 they brought to Norwin WPIAL and PIAA championship trophies.
During her spring semester, Manik Wright was a member of the Knights track team, competing in the mile- and two-mile relay, 800- and 1,600-meters, and sprint relay events.
When Manik Wright’s soccer career ended at Norwin, she took her game to Gannon, where she was a four-year starter and letterwinner, and captain in 2000.
She earned all-conference honors three times, and was named to the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Women’s Soccer All-Academic team.
She was the university’s recipient of the Doc Beyer Award for outstanding achievement in scholarship and athletics.
At Gannon, Manik Wright earned a bachelor of science degree in elementary education and a bachelor of science degree in special education. For 11 years she was an autistic support teacher, and now teaches first grade.
“When I received the news of being selected, I was snuggled on the couch with my newborn son, Patrick,” she said. “I was very honored and excited to receive the news and I was thrilled to be able to share the news with my husband, David, my 6-year-old son, Jacob, plus my parents, Gene and Bernie Manik, who still reside in North Huntingdon, who happened to be there to share the wonderful news.
“When Jacob understood the reason for our excitement, he said ‘it was awesome and I was famous.’ ”