Valley News Dispatch Spotlight Athletes of the Week: Kiski Area's Patrick Miller, Freeport's Dava Jack
School: Kiski Area
Sport: Cross country
Report card: Miller took first place and also helped Kiski Area win the team title at the Westmoreland County Coaches Association meet. Miller took the title from two-time defending champion and teammate Brent Kennedy, who missed the meet with a shin injury.
How did it feel to win the WCCA meet?
I was pretty excited. It felt good to win, I felt bad Brent (Kennedy) couldn't run, but it was a big experience for me.
What was your best time this year?
I ran a 16:32 at the Red, White and Blue Invitational at Schenley Park.
How did you get into running cross country?
When I was in sixth grade, I had a teacher who was an assistant cross country coach, and he's the reason I tried it out.
What's your favorite course?
At Cooper's Lake, the site of the WPIAL championships.
What makes a good course?
Some hills; it can't be all flat.
Is there particular weather you prefer running in?
The fall. I like the slightly cooler days, minus the rain.
Do you prefer track or cross country?
I don't prefer one over the other, I like them both for different reasons.
Report card: The three-sport athlete is a standout defensive player on the soccer team. She netted her first goal of the season against Indiana last week. She also is a key member of the track team and runs the 100-meter hurdles and sprints. She is also a member of the girls basketball team.
Why do you wear a concussion cap, and whose idea was it?
Last year I got hit in the head a couple times, so my dad said I had to wear it. I had a few headaches. This season came along and I got hit in the head again, and I got little headaches. So my dad was worried and said the only way I could play is if I wear one. I don't even feel it's there.
Your sister, Erica, is a forward on the team. What's it like playing soccer with your sister?
No matter what, I know she will get a touch on the ball no matter where it's at because she's fast enough to run it down. She's also tough enough to hold her own. I have a lot of faith in her all of the time. When we do track I run right beside her in the lane.”
Who is faster: You or your sister?
It depends on the day. During track season one day she will win and the other I win. I think we're tied. I think I may have a better time at the 100-meter sprints.
Where does the name Dava come from?
It's from my godfather's name. His name was David. He helped raise my dad when he was growing up. My mom's mom thought of it. If I was a boy, it would've been David.
You are really into Crossfit. What are some things you can do because of it?
I definitely feel my upper body and my core are stronger. ... I think it helped us with upper body and core strength for sports.