Bishop Canevin’s Maziarz, McKeesport’s Robinson named Trib HSSN scholar-athletes of the month for December

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Monday, January 6, 2020 | 6:34 PM


The TribLive High School Sports Network is recognizing some of the best and brightest student-athletes in Western Pennsylvania.

School administrators, athletic directors, coaches and teachers have the opportunity to nominate one female and one male scholar-athlete to receive the TribLIVE High School Sports Network Scholar Athlete of the Month Award.

Nominees must be in good standing at a school that HSSN covers to qualify. They must have a 3.25 GPA or higher and must be actively contributing to a school-sanctioned athletics team in a positive way.

Nominations will be accepted from the first through the 14th of each month. Trib readers and fans then vote on their favorites from the 15th to the 25th. New nominations will be accepted and voting will take place each month from October 2019 through May 2020.

Winners for each month will receive a plaque, recognition in the Tribune-Review and on TribLIVE High School Sports Network and their school will receive a $200 donation toward their STEM program.

To nominate or vote, visit TribHSSN.TribLIVE.com and click on the Scholar Athlete of the Month banner.

Here’s a closer look at December’s Trib HSSN scholar-athletes of the month:

Maddie Maziarz

School: Bishop Canevin

Class: Senior

Sport: Volleyball, softball

Claim to fame: Bishop Canevin senior setter Maddie Maziarz was selected to the all-state volleyball for a second time after helping the Crusaders capture their third straight WPIAL Class A championship this fall.

A team captain with more than 2,000 career assists, she finished her career as the program’s all-time leader in aces and assists. She also set a single-season record for aces.

The John Carroll volleyball recruit also plays softball at Bishop Canevin and is a mission trip participant, house captain, a student representative on the Middle States Committee, a student ambassador, National Honors Society inductee and member of the international club, international committee and junior achievement. She maintains a 4.57 GPA.

How did it feel to win a third straight WPIAL championship?

It was amazing. I can’t describe the feeling going through it with my family. We established a strong family unit, did it together, put in the work and it paid off at the end.

What was the strength of this year’s team?

I think our togetherness. Losing as many seniors as we did, we knew we had to come together as a new team, support each other and hold each other accountable.

What will you remember most about the season?

The family unit. We all just care about each other so much. It was more than just an on-court bond. Off the court, we did things together that brought us closer.

How did you get started in volleyball?

It was in fourth grade. I was just trying out a bunch of different sports. I started to love volleyball. The program at my grade school (Our Lady of Grace) was really good. I really liked it.

What does it take to be a good setter?

You have to be super vocal and a leader on the court. Regardless of how you feel, you have to put it all out there for your girls. You are the link between the pass and the hit. You have to do what’s best for the team. You have to hold yourself, the hitters and the passers accountable.

Do you have siblings that also play?

My two younger sisters play — Abbie and Emmie. Abbie is a sophomore, and Emmie is in seventh grade. Abbie is a middle attacker, and my youngest sister is a setter or libero; she hasn’t chosen yet.

What are your plans for next year?

I’m going to John Caroll University and playing volleyball.

What will you study?

I’m undecided, maybe in the business field or bio in the neurosciences.

Where did you take your mission trip?

It was down to Washington County. We stayed in the W&J dorms and went to the food bank and Washington City Mission and a few churches and gardens and volunteered our services. It was a week long over the summer.

What is your class load like this year?

I’m taking AP statistics, advanced bio and the highest level of accounting we have and AP Spanish 4. I have honors British literature, honors politics, psychology and religion.

What do you like to do outside of volleyball and softball?

I like to spend time with my family and friends. I’m very family-oriented. I also like to golf. I work at Top Golf. I recently got a new job working as a sales rep for Kombucha. I’ll be doing that out of Whole Foods. I like staying active and playing a bunch of sports.

How do you want to be remembered at Bishop Canevin?

I remember my freshman year I did not exactly feel included. I wanted to make sure this year, from freshmen to seniors, everyone knew their importance on the team. I’d like to be remembered as someone who brought everyone together. Hopefully, for years to come, it stays like that with the leadership.

What is your New Year’s resolution?

To stay active. I’m not playing club volleyball this year, so I’m looking at doing CrossFit and working out with a personal trainer. Also to stay on top of my schoolwork and coming up with a preferred major.

Devari Robinson

School: McKeesport

Class: Senior

Sport: Football, basketball, track and field

Claim to fame: It takes a special player to run McKeesport’s vaunted flexbone offense. Senior Devari Robinson certainly fell into that category this fall.

Robinson ran for 1,561 yards, which was seventh in the WPIAL, in leading the Tigers to the WPIAL Class 5A semifinals. He also scored 33 touchdowns, second in the WPIAL behind only West Greene’s Ben Jackson (50). And, he completed 16 of 57 passes for 295 yards and six TDs. He also plays basketball and runs for the track and field team.

In addition, Robinson is a member of the National Honor Society and speech club and carries a 3.8 GPA.

How do you think football season went?

I think it went pretty good. Although we didn’t have the outcome we wanted, I think it went better than it could have if we didn’t put in the proper work.

What was it like to run the flexbone offense?

It meant a lot to me. I was born and raised in McKeesport and always came to the games. It meant a lot to be in control of that offense, know how to run it and use my talent and athletic ability to be able to function right and get us where we needed to go.

What makes the offense so tough to defend?

Basically, it’s all discipline. Everybody wants to make plays, which as a football player is natural. But if you don’t stay with your assignments, we’ll run you up and down the field.

Are you the fastest player on the team?

Yes. The last time I was clocked in the 40 was at camp over the summer. I ran a 4.5 (seconds).

What drives you on the football field?

The people that can’t be there with you or can’t be at the game.

What are your plans for next year?

I’m planning on signing sometime in February. I’m gonna use my time to figure out where my next home is gonna be. Big options for me are Army and Navy. There’s a couple D2 schools I’m looking at.

What will you study?

Business management.

How has basketball season gone so far?

Pretty good. The team is 4-3 right now, but we’re coming together really good. I enjoy it.

What will it take to reach to the PIAA track championships in the sprint relay?

I think last year it was a chemistry thing. Our first leg (runner) tore his hamstring the week of the race. We had to replace him on short notice. I think if we work hard, we should do well.

How do you want to be remembered at McKeesport?

I think I’ll be remembered as a good student and great person. That’s the way I want to be remembered. Athletics is good and all and I try my best to do the best I can, but I wouldn’t be where I am without the people around me who support me.

Did you make a New Year’s resolution?

To try to get better. I take every day one by one. I promised myself I would try and make myself a better person every day.

Bill Hartlep is the sports editor of the Tribune-Review. You can contact Bill at bhartlep@tribweb.com or via Twitter @TribHSInsider.

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