A-K Valley athletes of the week: Highlands’ Sarah Sawhook and Leechburg’s Dylan Cook

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Tuesday, February 11, 2020 | 5:14 PM


Sarah Sawhook

Class: Senior

School: Highlands

Sport: Basketball

Report card: Sawhook finished her high school career with a pair of 20-point efforts, scoring a personal-best 25 in a 73-48 loss to Apollo-Ridge and 22 in a 47-44 loss to Burrell. She was a four-year starter.

What’s the most memorable moment of your basketball career at Highlands?

Probably just working as a team and improving as an individual, as well.

Do you have any college plans?

Right now it’s between Seton Hill and Gannon, and I possibly could play softball.

Do you have any superstitions or pregame routines?

I don’t really have a routine, but one thing I don’t do is drink coffee before games because I don’t play well when I drink coffee.

Do you have a favorite pregame meal?

I like to eat oatmeal before games because it’s a good source of carbohydrates.

What’s your favorite school subject?

It would have to be science, and right now it’s either biology or psychology.

Who would win a team-wide game of H-O-R-S-E?

I mean, I would say that I would win.

What are your favorite basketball teams?

I like the Lakers, and for the WNBA, I like the L.A. Sparks, so I like both Los Angeles teams. My favorite WNBA player is Shannon Bobbitt, because she’s really short and she still made the WNBA. She’s a good dribbler and a good player.

What’s your favorite TV show?

Honestly I don’t watch TV that often. I like to read. My favorite book is “The Glass Castle” by Jeannette Walls.

What’s something interesting about you that people may not know?

I can walk on my hands the entire length of the gym floor. Some of my basketball teammates have witnessed it.

Dylan Cook

Class: Junior

School: Leechburg

Sport: Basketball

Report card: Cook scored a career-high 36 points in an 85-40 win over Clairton, helping the Blue Devils finish in a tie for third place in the Section 3-A standings with the Bears. He had a team-high 24 points in a 67-40 win over St. Joseph.

How’d it feel to have a strong performance against Clairton, a team that beat you earlier in the season?

(Clairton) didn’t have (Kenlein) Ogletree, who is one of their best players, and we respect him. That definitely helped us, but we felt like we put it all together against them. The first time we played them, we made too many mistakes, and we didn’t have Braylan Lovelace and he was back. That was a big help.

What is the mindset for the team entering the playoffs?

Our saying that we carry from football to basketball is “It’s not who we play, but how we play.” That is what (Leechburg) football coach (Mark George) always drove into our heads, and it follows us into basketball season because most of our football players are also basketball players. It all depends on how we show up. Are we going to be the team that loses to Clairton, or the team that beats them by 45? Single-A is so tight right now, and I was talking to (Leechburg basketball) coach (Damian Davies) the other day and we think that the team that puts together the best three week stretch is the team that is going to win it.

What’s the most memorable moment for your basketball career at Leechburg?

Definitely being a part of two players going over 1,000 points: Jake Blumer this year and Christian Hack my freshman year. Those were awesome to me, and it’s something I hope to do next year. Also our first playoff win my freshman year. We hadn’t won a playoff game since 2011, so it was great to be a part of that team.

Do you have any superstitions or pregame routines?

I always wore long sleeves under my jersey, but in the Imani Christian game at home when they were undefeated and we upset them, I wore a short-sleeve shirt under my jersey and I had a career high. I wore that same short-sleeve shirt in our next home game, which was the Clairton game. I’m going to keep wearing that shirt as much as possible.

Do you have a favorite pregame meal?

My mom likes to make me a pregame meal, but it’s tough with both of my parents working and she’s not always home when we are traveling to an away game, so I don’t have something I stick to all the time. I do like to get as many carbs as I can before games, so I eat any type of pasta.

What’s your favorite school subject?

I like history more than anything else.

What player on the team would win a game of H-O-R-S-E?

I’d like to say Connor (McDermott) because he’s our best shooter, but Eli Rich can make bank shots from anywhere, including the corners. I don’t know how he does it. If we’re calling banks, it’d be tough to beat Eli.

What NBA player would you like to play one-on-one?

If it’s all-time, it’d be Allen Iverson, but right now it’d be Damian Lillard because there’s so much you have to worry about when you’re guarding him. He’s my favorite player.

What’s your favorite TV show?

“Impractical Jokers.”

What’s something interesting about you that people might not know?

I’ve been the three-year starter at quarterback, and I almost didn’t play my freshman year. One of my family friends sat down with me for three hours and talked me into playing. I was just going to focus on basketball.

Jerin Steele is a freelance writer

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