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New senior makes presence felt on court

Tom DiGrispino
Senior Preston Saia

Senior Preston Saia has had anything but the average high school career. Coming from off a computer screen to being pushed into a new environment of over 2,000 students. 

Saia’s transition while it may seem scary, there’s a positive side as well.

“I like public school better to be honest because I have teachers who are actually teaching me, and I can ask questions to them,” Saia said.  It’s had a good effect.”

Saia previously attended John Bosco and all of his coursework was completed online, but his love of basketball put him front and center on the court. Saia not only has had to adjust with schooling but also with an entirely new team.

“The transition to the new school  and new team has been amazing so far. The coaches pushed me hard and got us way better prepared for the season.”

There are of course core points that make each team different.

“Last school it was decent but they weren’t pushing us as much but this school I like a lot because they are pushing us,” Saia said. “ Teammates have good chemistry and we should have a really good year this year.”

 Assistant Coach David Pritt encouraged Saia to remain himself.

“ Just when he came in, it was kind of like, be yourself, be who you are, like, don’t try and change because you’re in a different environment,” Pritt said.

Pritt and fellow coaching staff relayed helpful advice to the senior. 

“Then we talked to him that we need that vocal leader, we need someone as a senior and upperclassman to kind of step up and kind of take that role because we haven’t had it in the last couple years, ” Pritt said. “So I think talking with him and letting him just be himself, be a leader and be vocal, that that’s helped him a lot along the way.”

The saying team doesn’t just have an “I” is standing true in the case of Saia. Team support has been crucial in inviting Saia onto the team.

“All my teammates showed love to me, Saia said. “There was no one that was like a doubtful person or like mean to me. Everyone was nice and welcoming. Literally taught me everything, so it was perfect

 Many of his teammates agree that Saia not only is beneficial on the court, but also makes sure to check in with everyone and be a shoulder to lean on. 

Shamar Matthews, another member of the team, eyes widened as he thought about the dedication Saia puts into his training. 

“His work ethic is actually phenomenal,” Matthews said. “Some days he’ll be here at 5 pm and the coach will be saying practice is at 6 pm he’ll be in at 5 getting in shots.

Saia’s training towards the sport has landed him with unparalleled opportunities with college offers.

“It’s been amazing, Saia said. “I never knew it would come that fast because I had one then it just turned to 5 so I have 5 offers right now. I’ve just been blessed, it’s amazing.”

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About the Contributor
Destiny Givens, Editor
My name is Destiny Givens and I am currently a senior here at Merrillville High School. I love being able to share a variety of stories that I feel are important for people to read about. I am currently involved in a variety of clubs and extracurriculars and highly involved in the school being an officer in many of my clubs. I hope that throughout the year I am able to write articles I truly care about that you are loving to read.

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