With 141 of 398 total votes, Earlville’s Nevaeh Sansone is The Times Athlete of the Week, sponsored by Northern Insurance Group, LTD; Jim Boes Services; and Christian Reynolds American Family Insurance.
Sansone’s strong season for the Red Raiders continued this past week, highlighted by a 27-point, 11-rebound, six-steal double-double in Earlville’s 16-point Little Ten triumph over Hiawatha. Also on the ballot were runner-up Nate Othon (Seneca wrestling), Cooper Knoll (Ottawa boys basketball) and Christian Benning (Streator boys basketball).
Next week’s ballot is online now and can be found via Facebook (The Times Sports) and Twitter (@jtpedelty), with voting going through midday Wednesday.
Here is a Q&A with this week’s winner:
Do you have any nicknames?
Sansone: Yes, my family and a few close friends call me Beanza, and other friends or teachers just call me Vaeh.
You’ve been piling up double-doubles this season. Which do you find harder to get to: double-digit points or double-digit rebounds?
Sansone: I’ve found that getting double-digit rebounds is a lot harder than getting double-digit points, because when going up for a rebound you have more than just one or two defenders trying to block you or steal the ball. You have all five of the opposing team’s players trying to get a second-chance point or trying to stop you from getting a second-chance point.
How old were you when you started playing basketball, and who first taught you the game?
Sansone: I have played basketball for as long as I can remember, but I didn’t play for my school until my sixth-grade year. My brother was the main person who taught me the game of basketball, but my middle school coach also taught me a lot when I first joined his team.
What is your pregame routine?
Sansone: I usually chew gum and listen to music really loud.
What is your best memory made on a basketball court so far?
Sansone: My best memory on the court this year was when we had our “Pack the Place” and I scored 27 points.
Who are a few of your favorite musical artists/bands, and what is the best concert you’ve ever attended?
Sansone: I don’t really have a favorite artist/band. I like listening to almost anything, and I have actually never been to a concert. I would say my favorite genre is ′90s rap.
What is your favorite ice cream flavor? Any toppings?
Sansone: My favorite ice cream flavor would have to be strawberry.
What goals do you and your teammates have down the stretch of this season?
Sansone: My teammates and I have a very good relationship, and one of our goals for this season is to always have fun and play as a team no matter what.
Do you have any college plans yet? If so, do they involve sports?
Sansone: I’m a little torn between going to college and playing sports or just going to a trade school after I graduate.