Daily News spotlight athletes: Elizabeth Forward's Kameron Faychak, Serra Catholic's Hannah Schorr
School: Elizabeth Forward
Claim to fame: Faychak finished second in the 100-meter breaststroke at the WPIAL Class AA finals with a time of 1:01.04. This was his fourth time qualifying for the PIAA tournament. He will also swim the 100 backstroke and the 200 individual medley in the YMCA state tournament.
“Kameron is such a well-rounded kid,” coach Tammy Blackwood said. “He's qualified for the state tournament all four years. He's an outstanding athlete and gets great grades. He is passionate about all aspects of swimming. He works hard all the time and always wants to know why he is doing things. He's very interested in the sport.”
How did you get into competitive swimming?
When I was younger my mom started me with swim lessons at the McKeesport YMCA. The teacher was a swim coach, and she told me I should do it competitively. I did, and that's how I got started.
What event do you enjoy the most?
I think I like the breaststroke the most. It's just one of my best events, and I think that's why I enjoy it so much.
How do you prepare for a meet?
Well, we taper for both the WPIAL and PIAA tournaments, so it's just a lot of tougher practices. For each meet, we work on different drills for different strokes to get the technique down.
What is most difficult about competitive swimming?
I'd say it's really difficult when you don't hit the time that you want. When you practice so hard and then you don't hit the time you want it is really disappointing.
What are your plans for next year?
I'm not positive on what school I'm going to yet, but I do plan on swimming. I'm not 100 percent sure what I want to study, but right now I'm thinking physical therapy.
School: Serra Catholic
Claim to fame: Schorr averaged 189.17 in the six-game qualifying round of the PIAA bowling championships. She lost to eventual champion Amanda Balas, but recorded a tournament high of 268. Outside of high school bowling, Schorr qualified for the Junior Gold National tournament in July.
“She brings a solid foundation to our team,” coach Martin Schorr said. “She has averaged a 206 this year, which is the second-highest average in the WPIBL. She's very consistent and a very good shot maker and hits her spares really well.”
Are you still able to bowl for fun after doing it competitively?
I don't really go out with non-bowling friends to go bowling because it always turns into practice with me. I always go with other bowlers. I can sometimes, but every time I bowl I try to improve myself. Cosmic bowling isn't as fun anymore.
How often do you bowl?
I bowl in a couple leagues in White Oak, and I do tournaments every weekend. I do a lot of junior tournaments all over the area. I probably bowl five days a week, and I've qualified for a national tournament called the Junior Gold Championships in Buffalo, N.Y.
What's the toughest shot you've ever made?
When I was at nationals last year I picked up a 4-6-7-10 which is the two corner pins on each side. Not sure how I did it but they all fell and I was very, very surprised.
Do you get nervous or feel any pressure since it's just you out there?
I do sometimes. I try to control it as best I can but sometimes there is a lot of pressure. You just have to work your way through it.