Alle-Kiski Valley Athletes of the Week: Riverview’s Sydney McDonough, Plum’s Lamar Whiting

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Thursday, January 11, 2018 | 4:12 PM


Sydney McDonough

School: Riverview

Class: Sophomore

Sport: Basketball

Report card: In her second year as a starter for the Raiders, McDonough has blossomed into Riverview's top scorer. She put up a team-high 15 points against Brashear in the Spartans Holiday Tournament to earn herself a spot on the all-tournament team and came back with a 14-point effort against Section 2-2A foe Sto-Rox. A two-year starter, McDonough leads Riverview (5-5, 2-3) in points per game (9), points (81) and steals (30). McDonough also starts at forward for the soccer team and runs track.

How long have you been playing basketball?

My whole life, probably since like second or third grade.

Riverview has had an up-and-down season so far. What do the Raiders need to do to be more consistent?

Trust each other and (play) more as a team since we're so young.

Overall, the Raiders are a young team. Where do you see this team in two years?

I think we have a unique opportunity because we're so close, and by the time we're seniors we'll all be on the same page.

Thursday's matchup against Northgate is for fourth place in the Section 2-2A standings. How important is it?

We've been preparing for it because we want to be fourth and make the playoffs.

Where does this team need to improve the most down the stretch run of the season to stay in the hunt for a spot in the postseason?

Just play together and work hard as a team. Ball movement; since we all want to score, we don't pass as often.

What's the strength of this year's team?

I think we're all very eager to win and working as hard as we can.

Who is your favorite NBA player and team?

I really like Steve Nash and probably the Warriors. I really like the All-Stars on the team.

What is your favorite basketball movie?

Probably “Hoosiers” because my dad loves it, and we always watch it.

What three words best describe you?

Hardworking. Social. Dedicated.

What three people would you like to have dinner with?

Conor McGregor, Tom Brady and Pope Francis.

What is your favorite subject at school?

Probably math class because I have a lot of my friends in there.

What is something interesting about you that nobody knows?

I'm a certified scuba diver. I've dived at Epcot, Disney World and at the Florida Keys, which was really nice.

What's the strangest thing you've seen while scuba diving?

Me and my dad were (scuba diving) underneath a light house in Sombrero Key, and we came face-to-face with a bunch of barracudas.

Lamar Whiting

School: Plum

Class: Junior

Sport: Basketball

Report card: The Mustangs will go as far as Whiting takes them this year. The 6-foot guard is coming off back-to-back 30-point performances last week when he put up a career-high 36 points in Plum's triple-overtime win over Armstrong and another 30 in the Mustangs' loss to Section 3-6A rival Woodland Hills. A team captain and two-year starter, Whiting leads Plum (5-6, 0-4) in points per game (24) through 11 games.

How long have you been playing basketball?

Since I was 6 or 7 years old.

Did you think you'd come out and average 24 points per game at the midway point of the season?

No, I didn't. I didn't know that I'd have to score a lot for the team, but I just do whatever I can to help the team win.

Do you think you've taken your game to the next level this season?

I'm trying to get there.

Plum started the season hot at 3-0 but has gone 2-6 since mid-December. Where are the Mustangs struggling at?

I would say defense. We struggle playing defense against athletic teams and bigger teams.

The Mustangs have eight Section 3-6A games over the next four weeks. What is the team's goal going down the stretch run of the season?

The goal is try to make it to playoffs and get on a win streak.

How tough is the competition in Section 3-6A?

There's a lot of good players in our section, but we also like the competition, so we don't mind it.

Who is your favorite NBA player and team?

The Houston Rockets and Chris Paul.

Do you have a favorite basketball movie?

“Space Jam.”

What three words best describe you?

Funny. Athletic. Cool.

What three people would you like to have dinner with?

Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant and Chris Paul.

What is your favorite subject at school?

Math.

What is something interesting about you that nobody knows?

I like to play video games. “NBA 2K” is my favorite.

— William Whalen

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