Daily News spotlight athletes: West Mifflin's Ryan Maha, McKeesport's Nassiah Bray
By Robert Stinner
Published: Wednesday, Feb. 5, 2014, 12:01 a.m.
School: West Mifflin
Claim to fame: Maha scored 25 points to lead West Mifflin (10-5, 6-4) to an 82-70 win over Section 4-AAA rival Steel Valley last Friday. He also surpassed 1,000 career points in a 77-71 victory over Belle Vernon.
“It is interesting to coach your own child but he's a good kid and he's made it easy for me,” West Mifflin coach Lance Maha said. “I would say it's easier for me to coach him than it is for him to play for me. We expect him to lead because of the amount of experience he has. He can shoot, handle the ball and pass. He's a pretty skilled kid who has been able to lend some stability to us. Unfortunately, he's played at 70-80 percent because of his knee, so he hasn't practiced much. Despite that he's averaged close to 19 points per game.”
How does it feel to reach 1,000 career points?
It was a nice accomplishment. To be mentioned with CJ (Hester), Bryant (McCallister), Chris (Giles) and Keith Perry is great. It's more about the team's accomplishments but that was one individual accomplishment that I am very proud of.
How do you keep yourself motivated and improving as a basketball player?
I just keep our team goals in mind. We have a progression of goals every year to: make playoffs, win the section, try to win a WPIAL title, get into the state playoffs and win a state title. The traditions that came before me keeps myself, and our team focused to keep up those standards. It helps keep the whole team motivated.
What are you going to be doing next year?
I verbally committed to Carnegie Mellon to study economics and minor in policy and management. I'd like to try to get a job on Wall Street and see how it works out. I know you can go in thinking one thing and come out thinking something completely opposite, so we'll see how that goes.
Have you ever beaten your dad one-on-one?
I can't even tell you the last time we played but I think he beat me. He hasn't brought it up recently because I don't think he wants to play me anymore.
What is your favorite high school basketball experience?
We went to Disney this past year over Christmas. It was a really interesting. It was great timing and we had great weather. It was really fun and it's paying dividends now because we bonded as a team. The whole team stayed in three rooms for six straight days. We laughed a lot and it only helped our chemistry. That's a trip I will never forget. It was an unbelievable time.
Claim to fame: Bray scored 21 points as the Tigers (8-11, 3-6) defeated Section 2-AAAA foe Franklin Regional, 55-47, last week. She has scored in double figures 12 times this season and is averaging 11 points per game.
“Nassiah has really improved her game in many ways this season,” McKeesport coach Eric Smith said. “She has become more of a scorer and she allows the game to come to her a lot better now. As a sophomore and even at the beginning of this year she forced shots and passes, but she has improved on that dramatically. She's taking advantage of what the defense gives her. She has cut down on the turnovers and is averaging five or six points more per game this year. She's a great leader and has a great understanding of the game.
Who do you look forward to facing each year?
I like facing Gateway because they're probably our biggest rival, and I just really like playing against them.
What is your favorite place to vacation?
I love to go to Ocean City, Md., and walk on the boardwalk.
Do you have a favorite player or team?
My favorite player is Maya Moore. I like the way she plays. She's so aggressive and just I want to play like her. My favorite team would have to be UConn. They're always so good. They're unstoppable.
How did you get into playing basketball?
I've played since I was 5 at the YMCA. I started, and I just kept going.
What do you like to do outside of playing basketball?
I like to hang out with my friends and have fun with them.
What is your favorite class in school?
I'd have to say pre-calculus because I understand it the most out of all of my classes.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Starkey: Where’s joy in Penguins country?
- Bylsma critical of Penguins’ effort, Fleury’s late-game gaffe
- Bankruptcy judge orders meeting to resolve issues around Rock Airport sale
- Bylsma: Crosby ‘healthy, ready to go’
- Gov. candidate Wolf admits part of ‘Fresh Start’ campaign plan plagiarized
- Outdoor construction on track for UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex in Cranberry
- Oil and gas supplier Baker Hughes says it will list all fracking fluids
- Troy Hill building owner sets auction to clear out building
- Utica shale gas wells in Ohio dismay EQT
- Woman shot, killed in bar parking lot in New Brighton
- ‘Lebowski’ event at Arsenal Lanes ties together all things ‘Dude’