High school athletes of the week: North Allegheny's Brendan Brown; Vincentian's Ally Bartoszewicz
School: North Allegheny
Claim to fame: Brown had 11 kills and seven blocks for the Tigers, helping them win their eighth consecutive WPIAL title after topping Norwin, 3-0, in the WPIAL Class AAA championship May 22 at Baldwin. Brown also had 17 kills and nine blocks in a 3-0 win over Bethel Park in the semifinals May 20.
How special was it to be a part of a team that has locked up its eighth straight WPIAL title?
It's very special for me because playing last year with a ton of seniors with experience throughout the years and coming in this year being the only returning starter, I didn't know what to expect. I'm extremely proud of the accomplishments we made.
As the only returning starter, how did you steer everyone in the right direction?
I just took what I took from the seniors last year. That's just trying to be the best leader on the court. If you make a mistake, you have to shake it off. If someone else makes a mistake, just tell them it's okay, you'll get it back.
What are your thoughts on returning to states and potentially repeating?
Another championship is possible. It's a whole new team, so I don't know. But the way we've been playing, if we keep the momentum going and play the way we can, I think we can do it again.
What are your plans after high school?
I will be attending Lourdes University in Ohio and studying marketing and playing volleyball out there.
What kind of things do you want to work on to be prepared for the college game?
Over the summer I'm going to be doing some volleyball training and some lifting. My coach-to-be in college is a weightlifting coach. He has the guys do his program. I want to come in semi-ready for what I'll be expected to do.
Sport: Track and field
Claim to fame: Bartoszewicz became the third girl in 15 years to win the 100- and 200-meter dashes in the PIAA Class AA championships. The Notre Dame recruit joined Olympic track standout Lauryn Williams and Washington's Alyssa Wise after winning the 100 (12.28) and 200 (24.72) this year. Bartoszewicz also was a staple on the Vincentian girls basketball team that won a PIAA title this year.
Talk about what it's like ending your high school career with gold medals around your neck?
It's surreal. That's been the ultimate goal and what I've been working toward since the beginning when I started high school athletics.
By now you know the company you've joined by winning the 100 and 200 out of the WPIAL.
I heard. It's amazing. I've always looked up to Lauryn Williams as role model. To be mentioned in the same sentence as her is awesome... very humbling, too.
What are you most looking forward to as you get set to go to Notre Dame?
I'm very excited. I'm at peace knowing it's the best school for me. There's a lot that I have to look forward to.
What are some of the things you are looking forward to?
I'm very excited for the whole, new experience. The people. The track program. I'm going to be competing at an entirely different level.
What moment stands out most from your high school career?
This entire year, in both sports. To win a state championship with basketball and to win medals in track has just been something I'll never forget.