Northwest Christian’s Gavin Kohner Using Soccer to Inspire

Northwest Christian boys soccer player Gavin Kohner achieved a dream earlier this spring. He signed his letter of intent to join Clemson’s paralympic soccer team. 

Kohner wrapped up his senior season landing second on the team in goals scored for the Crusaders. He has had aspirations to play at the highest levels he can since he was a young boy. 

When Gavin was born, his umbilical cord wrapped around his neck. He was later diagnosed with a mild form of cerebral palsy, which affected the right side of his body. After multiple botox injections to relax the muscles, wearing braces on his right arm and leg and undergoing a recustructive surgery on his leg, the Kohner family started exploring potential paralympic opportunities on the soccer pitch. 

Gavin was able to get a tryout with Team USA and was one of the youngest players to ever qualify for the team, according to his father. 

Gavin went on to train internationally as a 15 year old with a team predominantly made up of players in their mid-20’s. 

Playing with Clemson could help him take another step in achieving his dream of playing in the Paralympics and representing his country. The Tigers’ program is partnered with Team USA and the two organizations are in constant contact when formulating the national roster. 

Gavin also gets it done in the classroom. He was a part of the 2021 Sports360AZ All-Academic Winter Team and wants to pursue a law degree once he hangs up his cleats, whenever that may be.