Athletes of the Week: Shakim Alonzo & Maggie Gruber


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Shakim Alonzo, Woodland Hills

Last week: A 6-foot-5 senior guard/forward, Alonzo averaged 22 points in wins against Gateway (58-49 Friday) and REDA, Ontario (73-51 in the Pitt National Showcase at Shaler Sunday). He surpassed 1,000 career points in the big Class AAAA Section 2 win against the Gators, who were ranked No. 3 in WPIAL Class AAAA at the time.

Check this out: Alonzo is averaging a team-high 20.5 points and about 12.5 rebounds per game for the Wolverines, who have won five consecutive games to improve to 13-3 overall and 7-1 in Section 2-AAAA. One of the WPIAL's top all-around athletes, Alonzo has made a verbal commitment to play football at Cincinnati. He was the leading receiver for the Wolverines.

Are you going to miss basketball once you get to college? Kind of ... No, not really. I don't really like basketball. I just play it.

Beating defending WPIAL champion Gateway once is one thing. Sweeping them is another. What does that mean? We're doing great things. We're playing the ball we know how to now. It took us a few years, but we've finally got it.

There are more than a handful of Woodland Hills graduates in the NFL. Have you ever spoken to any of them? Yeah, I've talked to a bunch of them. I talked to Ryan Mundy, Darrin Walls ... I've talk to most of them -- besides the old ones like (30-year-old) Lousaka Polite and (37-year-old) Jason Taylor.

If you tried out for American Idol, what song would you sing? I think I would sing "Moves Like Jagger" or something by Trey Songz.

People would be surprised to know about me ... I like to draw a lot.


Maggie Gruber, Mars Area

Last week: Gruber, one of the premier swimmers in the state, continued to round into form in preparation for the WPIAL and PIAA championships, which take place in March.

The skinny: Gruber, a junior, will soon be defending three titles. As a sophomore, she won gold medals in the 100-yard butterfly and 100-yard backstroke at the WPIAL Class AA championships. She then won PIAA gold in the 100 butterfly. She is ranked in the top 10 nationally in the 16-year-old age group in several events by USA Swimming.

What time do you get up each morning for practice? I usually wake up at about 4:50. We usually have to be ready to swim at 5:30.

Wow. What time do you typically get to bed? About 10 p.m., right after I get my school work done.

Favorite pool? I like the one at the University of Pittsburgh. I swim there a lot and feel very comfortable there.

How will Joe Paterno be remembered? I think he will be remembered for all his football coaching. He's a legend at Penn State. I think people will remember him for the good things he did.

Name a tasty meal a family member makes? My mom likes to make her homemade mac and cheese. It's really good.

Athlete of the Week

First Published January 27, 2012 5:00 AM


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