Westlake High School senior Adam Sandor is a busy guy this winter. A very busy guy, as he is competing on the ice with the varsity hockey team, and on the hardwood with the varsity boys basketball team.
Sandor has been a leader for the Demons in lacrosse, football (playing both defensive end and tight end) and on defense on the ice all four years of high school, but the foray into basketball is something new for him.
He stated that the training needed to play basketball can improve his talents in the other sports that he plays.
“It will help me in football, especially with my footwork,” he said. “A lot of colleges are looking at me to play defensive end and tight end, so I researched it and noticed that many Division I football players also played basketball in high school. So I thought, why not give it a shot?
“Some of my friends thought it would be fun for me to try it also. Maybe I can lighten the mood at basketball practice.”
Sandor has either basketball or hockey games or practices seven days a week, with some days both sports playing on the same day.
“Right now, my body is doing fine,” he said. “I’m starting to eat a healthier diet and I make sure to stretch my body regularly.
“I was told that the Browns’ center (Alex Mack) did a lot of pregame stretching, almost like yoga, and he hasn’t missed a single game in his entire professional career. If he’s still healthy after all of those football games, I’m just going to do what he’s doing.”
On Dec. 7, Sandor had his first taste of playing back-to-back in both the hockey and basketball games, playing in all three periods of Westlake’s 6-1 victory over CVCA, and logging 2 seconds at the end of the first half of the Demons’ hoops victory over Elyria.
“I told (Sandor) that I wanted him to stay at the hockey game, because I think that they needed him a little bit more than we do,” Westlake varsity boys basketball head coach Shawn Hood said. “We love having him. He’s a phenomenal practice player.
“He’s certainly well rounded and intelligent enough and hard-working enough, academically, to handle this in the classroom. He’s a big, strong and tough kid, physically, so it’s like nothing to him to play both sports. He brings incredible toughness to our squad. He will be battling for minutes all season long, because that’s who he is.”
With all the time spent on athletics, Sandor had to get creative in finding a way to complete his studies.
“I have two study halls during the day, and they’re scheduled at good times for me, with one at the beginning of the day so I can finish up homework from the night before, and one is in near the end of the school day so I can a head start on the next day’s work,” he explained. “I also get early dismissal, after government class, so I can go home and try to get the rest of my work done before one of my practices.
“Some days, I can still work with Mo and Jacob (through Leadership Challenge) during one of my study halls, if my homework is completed.”
Westlake head varsity ice hockey coach John Duke is not worried about diminishing production from Sandor on the ice.
“Adam has proven himself to be a tremendous high school athlete, so he’ll contribute to both teams,” Duke said. “Obviously he’s one of the leaders on our team, but he’ll have a role to play on the basketball team as well. He’ll be just fine.
“The thing about kids like Adam, is that they are so focused. His grades have gotten better every year, and some very good academic colleges are looking at him. He’s a great kid and we’re supportive of his decision to play both sports.”
Photos – Ryan Kaczmarski