Tale of Two Titans: Chaplin, Reutinger named West Forsyth’s Male and Female Athletes of the Year

Published 12:00 am Thursday, June 13, 2024

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By Jay Spivey 

For the Clemmons Courier

CLEMMONS — Two athletes who had stellar careers at West Forsyth were recently named the school’s Athletes of the Year. 

Caman Chaplin, who played football and outdoor track and field, was named the Boys Athlete of the Year, and Abby Reutinger, who competed in cross-country, indoor track and field, outdoor track and field and soccer, was named the Girls Athlete of the Year. 

The two awards were given at the end-of-year sports Awards Day. 

“I was just happy and surprised,” Chaplin said.  

Chaplin found out that he won at the awards ceremony. For Reutinger, she found out a different way. She was tipped off. 

“I was told about a week before from my cross-country and track coach,” Reutinger said of Nathan Newsome, the head coach for cross-country, as well as indoor and outdoor track and field for the Titans. “He wanted to beat my other coach in telling me.” 

Even though she found out early that she won, it was still special. 

“I was a little shocked,” Reutinger said. “I was kind of scared because I don’t really like being the center of attention. So, I didn’t really want to walk up there. But I was really excited.” 

Chaplin had an amazing senior season on the West Forsyth football team as a running back under Coach Kevin Wallace, who was the first-year coach replacing Adrian Snow. In helping the team to an 8-4 overall record, he played in 11 of the 12 games, and he finished with 2,255 yards rushing on 249 carries with 31 touchdowns. In addition, he had 27 catches for 341 yards and two touchdowns.  

“I think (the season) went good,” he said. “It really started off with me training. Then, when Wallace came in and me learning his playbook, understanding how he was trying to run it, going off his feedback on what I needed to work on. Using that helped me play good in my senior season. It just had to pick off of (the 2022-23 season) considering we had a bad season last year and this year we had a good season. It gave us a feel that West was back and able to do what we normally do. 

Chaplin proved to be almost unstoppable during the football season, and thus, was given the award as the Central Piedmont 4-A football Offensive Player of the Year. 

“It didn’t really matter because I had the offensive line in the state behind me and stuff,” he said. “Having them up there, it was also good, and with Wallace’s scheme it just helped me shine even more this year.” 

As for Chaplin on the track, he said he said he did it to stay in shape, doing that the past three years, mostly as a sprinter. 

“On a track, although you’re a part of a team, when it comes to when you’re on a track you’re alone. It’s you one-on-one against everybody else. That’s the biggest difference about track.” 

Reutinger also knows her way around a track, as well as a running course. And she also competed in two sports this past spring — girls outdoor track and field and girls soccer. It’s extremely rare for athletes to play multiple sports, let alone compete in four sports and two at the same time. 

“It was good during cross-country and indoor track season, and then during (outdoor) track and soccer it was kind of difficult like splitting the time,” she said. “So, like most of the time I would just do one workout a week for track. Since we had so many soccer games in one week, so I never had time to go to practice. I would only like go to games and meets.” 

In indoor track, Reutinger ran the 4×800 relay and the mile. In outdoor track, she was also a distance runner.  

“Honestly, it was not that bad (to do two sports at once) until like the end of the season because at the beginning of the season I was balancing it pretty good,” she said. “And I ran a marathon like right at the beginning. But it was good because we had like easy games the next week, so I didn’t have to work too hard.” 

In soccer, Reutinger played in 18 games and finished with seven goals, helping the Titans to a 17-4-1 record. She missed two games during the playoffs because of a concussion in the first round of the NCHSAA Class 4-A playoffs against Central Piedmont 4-A rival Davie County. She missed the team’s final game, losing 4-2 to eventual Class 4-A state champion Waxhaw Marvin Ridge.  

“I think we still stayed strong, but in the center, we weren’t doing as well. Like, that’s what my coaches told me,” she said. “But they just really wished that I was there.” 

As for Chaplin and Reutinger, although they were both on the track-and-field team, they didn’t know each other that well. 

“I know Caman did really good in football with his running touchdowns and stuff,” she said. “But I just think we’re both, we’re both really good athletes for this year.” 

West Forsyth just had its graduation this past Saturday, but Chaplin won’t get much of a summer. He’s scheduled to report to Fayetteville State on Friday where he’ll play football this fall. 

“I think I held to the legacy because West has always had good running backs and I just helped continue that legacy by being a good running back like G’mone (Wilson, who is playing in college at Valdosta State),” he said. “It just helps to tell the legacy that West Forsyth always has a good running back.” 

As for Reutinger, she’s also heading to college soon. She is scheduled to report to Campbell University in August to run cross-country, as well as indoor and outdoor track and field. 

“For the cross-country team, I liked it a lot because it felt like a family,” she said. “And so, that’s what I looked for in a college team. And so, that’s kind of why I went to Campbell from West. And I just think it’s an overall good atmosphere on the sports scene because everyone’s encouraging and nice to each other.”