Fenwick senior Jon Kagan shows natural leadership skills

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Fenwick senior Jon Kagan was a “pretty easy choice” as a team captain, boys varsity soccer coach Rob Watson said.

Kagan, who plays forward, received 27 of 28 votes in the election for this year’s four captains.

“He’s not afraid to make an unpopular decision. He doesn’t succumb to peer pressure, but does what’s best,” Watson said. “He just puts his head down and gets to work. … He’s a natural pick for a leader.”

He showed those traits early in his Fenwick career. As a sophomore, Kagan took over in the nets when the Friars lost their goalie for the year. It was for that reason he received an award for having the best attitude, but he also scored the second-most goals on the team in the little bit of time he played the field.

Fellow captain Matt Benko said captains try to make sure the players are focused, on time and know what the coach wants them to do. It’s a work in progress the junior midfielder said.

“We still have a ways to go in playing better as a team. … We have a lot of young guys on the team. … Everyone’s getting used to playing with each other,” Benko said.

Benko and Kagan have been playing together for two years on the Fenwick varsity and for about four years with Chicago Edge.

“[Kagan’s] a lot of fun,” Benko said. “He has a very good vision and is a great athlete overall. He knows how to shoot and when to pass.”

Kagan, who has about five assists and seven goals, said passing is the strongest part of his game and he needs to work on shooting and handling the ball.

“This year I’m doing pretty well with goals and assists, where I can help other players,” he said. “I’m pushing the team as far as I can at practice, getting them assists so they can receive recognition.”

Kagan played soccer, baseball and basketball at Fenwick, so he has some choices for college, Watson said.

“I’m definitely keeping my options open because you never know what’ll happen or who’ll talk to you,” Kagan said.

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