SSN: Will Ruiz Athlete Feature

Nathan Goergen

The Karate Kid

Sophomore Competes for Team USA Across the World

It is a beautiful summer day in Bratislava, Slovakia. Far different from the hot and humid Indiana summers, summers in Slovakia are much cooler. The World Karate Championships is here this summer, and team USA has sent a vibrant and skilled group of athletes. Thousands of competitors from around the world fill up the brightly lit arena. One of these competitors is Will Ruiz, a sophomore here at HSE.

Will has been in Karate since he was three years old. With 12 years of experience with him, Will is now an award-winning black belt who has competed on the national and world stage.

“I was three and my brother (Gabe) was five, and my dad really wanted to get us involved in something, so he threw us in a karate dojo and hoped for the best”

His dad’s hopes came true, in twelve years, Will has earned a black belt, and gone to places like Florida, Ireland, and most recently Slovakia to compete, and has worked hard to get to where he is today.

“He is one of the hardest workers I know,” says Gabe Ruiz, a senior at HSE, who is his brother and teammate, “He goes to the dojo around four to five times a week, and does weightlifting three days a week, along with soccer on the side and being a student”

Will isn’t just a hard worker either. According to Sam Austgen, a Junior at Carmel High School, he is an excellent teammate and role model.

“He’s an excellent role model and training partner for the team, and he definitely gives the younger athletes somebody to look up to” said Sam Austgen.

Will may be competing nationally, but he still wants to improve and has set goals for himself.

“I am looking to improve my speed, and get into a tournament next October in China” said Will.

Will’s journey is far from over. He has the desire to be the best, and the work ethic to go along with it.

Story By Nathan Goergen