Alle-Kiski Valley athletes of the week: Kiski Area’s Jason Baker, Cheswick Christian Academy’s Bethany Kosor

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Tuesday, January 8, 2019 | 7:25 PM


Jason Baker

School: Kiski Area

Class: Sophomore

Sport: Basketball

Report card: Baker, a 6-foot-7 guard/forward, poses matchup problems for opposing teams while having the ability to score from just about anywhere on the court. In his first start, he put up 12 points against tip-off tourney host Derry and added a 10-point effort the next day against Ligonier Valley. He scored a career-high 22 points against Freeport. Baker also plays AAU basketball for Top Level All Stars and plans to join the Cavaliers track team and compete in the long jump.

Why do you like the sport of basketball?

It runs in my family. Once I first started, I caught on to it, I guess.

Can you sum up this team’s performance over the past month?

Our team has been doing good. We started off a little bit slow, but we’ve picked up the pace and we’re ready to battle any team.

What’s been the biggest change under first-year coach Will Saunders?

When he first came, we started running faster. We’re fast-paced. We just go.

Where does this team need to improve the most during the second half of the season?

We all need to improve on our shot selections.

What is the strength of this year’s team?

Everyone that gets in the game can pretty much shoot. If we need to get back into the game, we can shoot 3s or take it to the rack.

Do you have a favorite dunk?

I try to do a one-hand dunk. That’s my go-to.

Who is the one player that everyone is going to hear about as the season goes on?

Probably freshman guard Kyrell Hutcherson.

Who is the comedian in the locker room?

Me and Mason Bennett and Nick Smith are usually the ones that joke around the most.

Do you have a dream school to go and play college basketball at?

Probably Duke.

What is your favorite basketball movie?

“Love and Basketball.”

What is your favorite NBA team and player?

Los Angeles Lakers and LeBron James.

Was your favorite team Cleveland before James moved to the Lakers?

Yeah. I’m a LeBron follower, and I follow where ever he goes.

What three words best describe you?

Funny. Athletic. Generous.

What three people would you like to have dinner with?

LeBron James, Kevin Durant and Patrick Mahomes.

What is your favorite subject at school?

Math.

What is something interesting about you that people don’t know?

I like to go up to the Vandergrift courts with Kyrell (Hutcherson). Nobody really knows. We just shoot around.

Bethany Kosor

School: Cheswick Christian Academy

Class: Senior

Sport: Basketball

Report card: The 5-4 guard/forward might be short in stature, but she’s putting up big numbers for Cheswick Christian Academy (6-2). Kosor, a five-year starter, leads the Chargers by averaging 10.7 points. Kosor has six double-digit scoring efforts this season. The New Kensington resident put up a season-high 15 points against Evangel Heights and 11 against Harvest Baptist last Saturday.

Why do you like the sport of basketball?

I love it because I build great relationships with people, and I love figuring out how to get better at it. I’m very competitive.

How did last season’s struggles pave the way for this season?

I think it was good for the girls because all of them had to step up. I think it made us have to rely on each other more, and it taught us to dig deeper and harder than ever before.

How confident is this team playing right now?

I think it’s grown since last year. We’re not super confident. I’m probably the most confident. I think it’s all starting to click.

What is the strength of this year’s team?

For sure, passing and pushing the ball and our defense is really good. Our bench is very deep. We have seven girls that rotate in and out.

Is this the most talented team you’ve been a part of in your five years?

Yeah, I would say. We’ve had a some talented girls, but as a whole, as a team, this is the most talented.

How far can this team go this season?

Definitely to a championship. We’re looking ahead to that.

Who is the one player that everyone is going to hear about as the season goes on?

I really personally cannot say one in particular. All the starters, and even the others coming off the bench, have a special role.

Who is the comedian in the locker room?

We’re all best friends with each other and enjoy being around each other.

Who is your favorite NBA player and team?

I really don’t like NBA that much. I like college. March Madness is my favorite time of year.

Do you have a favorite college team?

Duke.

What three words best describe you?

Energetic. Confident. Exuberant.

What is your favorite subject at school?

Anything math-related.

What are your plans for after high school?

I’m going to Cedarville University (Ohio). I’m going to study childhood education with a focus on psychology. The goal is to be a missionary somewhere and to go out and help people.

What is something interesting about you that people don’t know?

I work at a Christian nonprofit in New Kensington called “Sonward,” and I’m there year-round. I’ve been there for four years. I ran a basketball camp for them when I was 14. I love working with kids.

William Whalen is a freelance writer.

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