Juniata Valley’s Johnson swings his way into versatile player

Local Sports

ALEXANDRIA, PA. (WTAJ) – Hunter Johnson won’t ever wow you with what he says, he lets his playing do the talking.

Johnson helped seal Juniata Valley’s first district title in more than 30 years back in 2018 with a pick-six, but that just began to scratch the surface of his ability. The wide receiver and defensive back is on the field almost every play, but his biggest impact comes on fourth down.

“Whenever I was younger, whether it be pee wee or midget, I would always be the punter,” Johnson said.

Hunter, though, is not your typical punter.

“I’m not as flexible as the normal punter should be,” Johnson said. “Our coaches don’t really talk about me staying back and waiting like a normal kicker or punter do. There are many times I’ll run down there and make a tackle on the sideline.”

But his unique style and build don’t stop him from launching bombs, helping him earn 1st team all-state for punting.

“Whenever I kick one and I hear the crowd going crazy, and I know it’s a good punt,” Johnson said.

Now this quiet kid is doing his best to market himself, releasing punting videos on social media.

“Whenever this virus happened, everyone was laying around the house, and I figured why not practice this punting skill and make it better, turn it into something,” Johnson said.

Where this might lead him, Johnson’s not sure, but he knows even when he’s having a bad game, it can be turned around with one swing of his leg.

“If I don’t have a good drive or something, I still have that last chance of helping the offense out,” Johnson said.

Helping out anyway he can, the perfect description for this do-it-all Hornet.

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