Topeka varsity football team features two women

Arielle Orsuto, Catch it Kansas

The Topeka Trojans visited Wichita Northwest Friday night. Even through the last-second madness, two players stood out among the crowd.

After three years starting for the Trojans, senior placekicker Ruth Fiander said she still gets looks when she takes the field.

“When we go here, the cheerleaders were walking around the track and they gave me a weird look, so I’m used to that,” she said.

But it doesn’t bother her, nor does it bother her teammate Lauren Dietrick. The Sophomore is the kicker-in-waiting, and she looks up to her predecessor.

“Ruth handles everything so well, she’s really confident about it,” she said.

The ladies said they’re treated just like one of the players.

“It’s definitely a different atmosphere but they’re great, I couldn’t ask for a better way they treat me,” Fiander said.

“At first I was really nervous that we were going to be treated differently, but it’s just like we’re family,” Dietrick added.

The kickers enjoy blazing a trail for other women to play male-dominated sports.

“I feel in a way i’m sort of setting the tone, especially with Lauren following in my footsteps,” Fiander said.

Dietrick agreed.
“I feel really good about it because i feel like we’re starting something new being the only girls playing.”

Northwest eliminated Topeka Friday night. Fiander committed to play soccer at University of Missouri Kansas City, while Dietrick will take her spot as the Trojans placekicker.

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