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No matter what the season, Laskowski answers the call

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JOHN N. BARRY
May 1, 2008
— Teammates call him “A-Rod.”

His football and baseball coach refers to him as “Mr. Flexibility.”


And opponents know him as a hard-nosed, gifted athlete.


Whatever moniker Aaron Laskowski goes by, one thing is certain. The Edgerton High senior knows how to win.


The sport doesn’t matter. Nor does the magnitude of the game. Laskowski expects to win every time he takes the field or the court. And he usually does.


A three-sport standout and honor-roll student, Laskowski is on track to become the school’s second baseball player to earn All-Rock Valley Conference first-team honors in four straight seasons.


Laskowski is 5-0 as a pitcher this season with a 1.40 ERA on a Crimson Tide team that shares the Rock Valley lead at 7-1 and is 8-2 overall. He also has managed to bat a robust .500, with 16 hits in 32 at-bats.


“Aaron’s kind of a throwback,” Edgerton football and baseball coach Mike Gregory said. “He’s an athlete for all seasons. All you have to do is look at his numbers for every sport, and also look at how successful those teams were.


“What makes Aaron even more valuable is the fact that he was so flexible in whatever he did.


“In football, he could’ve been a running back and carried the ball 15 to 20 times a game, but that’s not where we needed him most. We needed him at the slot receiver position.


“He had to make the switch to point guard in basketball when Joe (Kronforst) went down with the injury. And when we needed a pitcher in baseball, Aaron stepped up, and now he’s our No. 1 guy.”


Laskowski calls baseball his “passion,” but it will be football that keeps him occupied next fall. The 5-foot-10, 155-pound speedster plans to play at UW-Whitewater—the defending NCAA Division III national champion.


Laskowski earned all-conference first-team recognition at three football positions last fall, including a third straight year as a defensive back. He also had a record-breaking year as an offensive end and punter, while leading the Rock Valley in scoring with 94 points, including a school-


record 16 touchdown catches.


In 10 games, Laskowski caught 50 passes for 764 yards and finished his career with a school-record 106 receptions and 27 touchdowns.


Although his speed would be a bonus to an already-potent UW-Whitewater attack, second-year coach Lance Leipold plans to use Laskowski in the secondary.


“I’ll probably start out at free safety,” Laskowski said. “Coach told me that every freshman that comes in gets a chance to earn the right to play right away.


“I know I have to get in the weight room and get stronger, but I’m really excited about getting a chance to play for such a great program. Hopefully, if things work out, I can try and play baseball, too.”


Laskowski will get an early look at his new digs for next season when he practices at UW-Whitewater in preparation for the Wisconsin Football Coaches Association all-star game at Oshkosh on Saturday, July 19. He’s a member of the South team, along with Evansville’s Lucas Davis, Janesville Craig’s Tyler Uschan and Janesville Parker’s Harold Lloyd.


Laskowski went from two-guard to the point guard for this year’s Crimson Tide basketball team. The team didn’t miss a beat with Laskowski at the controls.


Edgerton went 20-3 for the school’s second 20-win season in five years, tied Evansville for the conference championship and was ranked second in the state in Division 2 late in the season. The Tide finished eighth in the ratings before losing a hard-fought regional final to third-ranked Monroe, the 2007 Division 2 state champion and a 2008 state qualifier.


“That game hurts more than any other loss I’ve ever had,” Laskowski said of a tough 54-46 battle that went down to the last 35 seconds. “To know we had the defending state champs on the ropes and couldn’t hang on really hurt. It took me awhile to get over that.”


The loss has fueled Laskowski this spring. The right-hander picked up his fifth win of the season on Tuesday in a 12-4 victory over Palmyra-Eagle.


“I’m trying to cherish each and every game,” Laskowski said. “As long as we don’t look past anybody, we have a chance to do really well in the tournament.”


Meanwhile, “really well” just begins to describe how Edgerton’s “A-Rod” has played throughout his remarkable high school career.


The Laskowski file

Person I admire most: My dad, my mom and my sister, Jessica, who passed away.


Pregame routine: Listen to iPod.


Best sports memory: Winning Rock Valley Conference in basketball this past season.


Favorite food: Scalloped potatoes and ham.


Favorite movie: “Major League.”


Most prized possession: My baseball glove.


If I could have one super power, it would be: To fly or have wings.


If I could play any other sport, it would be: Lacrosse.


Favorite all-time player (sports hero): Hank Aaron.


My favorite saying: “Practice makes perfect.”


CD currently getting the most play: Hootie & the Blowfish.



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