BR’s Dearborn named ‘Athlete of Week’
Blue Ridge senior Sawyer Dearborn tallied 113 points over three games in the past week. In a 54-43 loss to Montrose in the consolation game of the Susquehanna County Christmas tournament, Dearborn scored a game-high 38 points, including six 3s. The team bounced back to beat Montrose, 74-56, in league play as Dearborn amassed 40 points and added 35 more in a 69-50 victory over Mountain View.
For his accomplishments, he was named Scranton Times-Tribune Athlete of the Week.
Family: Mom, Corina; dad, Mark; sisters, Jocelyn and Kaitchen.
Other sport I play: baseball
Favorite teams: Penn State football, Baltimore Orioles, Oklahoma City Thunder
Athletes I admire: Kevin Durant. He’s fun to watch, and he has nice work ethic. He shows how hard work pays off. And Chris Haren. I just watched his 30 for 30 on ESPN, and his comeback was just awesome.
Favorite food: Pizza and wings.
Favorite movie: “Lawless.”
One word to describe me: Hard-working.
Three people I’d like to have dinner with: Arnold Schwarzenegger, my best friend Jake Hinkley and my Uncle Derb.
Post-graduation plans: I currently plan to attend Misericordia University to become a physician’s assistant, and obviously play basketball as well. I’m looking forward to it.
Superstitions and rituals: Our AD Mrs. (Jill) Hoffman always buys me two waters before a game, that’s just been brand new and starting to work. I always get a buffalo chicken sub at Subway before a game with my sister Kaitchen.
Where does the name Sawyer come from? My mom, who’s Australian, her grandma’s last name was Sawyer.
What has contributed to your performance this season? It was an emotional week because we had one of our player’s grandmothers pass, so we had extra motivation. We had a rough start of the season. We started the season, 0-4, and we came back. We lost a tough game to Montrose in the Christmas tournament, bounced back and wound up beating them by 20 the next time we played them. I think it was just brightening to us. That’s how we play, and this is how I can contribute. It was a nice experience. Hopefully it still goes on.
Seeing that start, how did you guys pick yourselves back up? We had high hopes at the start of the season, and then we started playing – our nonleague games were pretty tough. We played Honesdale and we played North Pocono, which are pretty high level teams. They tested us, guard-wise, and with physicality. Things started getting to us. We started getting at each other a bit more. We finally stepped back and realized we came together. The game at Montrose showed we can play as a team.
Does it give you confidence that your teammates want to get you the ball? We graduated two major guys from last year, so we’ve had to pick up the slack. The guys have been great. They’re great at helping me get the ball. If I don’t make a shot, they’re the first ones to tell me, “Don’t worry about it, keep pulling, keep shooting.” I always look for them, too. I’ve been really focusing on trying to make the others around me better than myself. We have a lot seniors, but we have a lot of younger guys who contribute as well. We’re trying to get them involved and show them everything.
What’s the team dynamic like? Right now, it’s going pretty well. It was a slow start because we didn’t know what works. Our defense has picked up. We rebound the ball so much more. We always have three or four guys always rebounding, sometimes five. We always have a fast break. We’re a fast team, we can run. The dynamic is we’re fast, but we can control you. Kind of get used to it, is what we say.
Are they starting to pick up how Blue Ridge basketball works? At first, the start of the year was rough. It’s slowly starting to build up. Each game, we’re building on something positive, and our negative list is getting smaller.
You were talking about how you had three dunks this season. My first dunk in a game this season came against Montrose in the consolation game of the Christmas tournament. In the third quarter, it was an easy fast break. I kind of just jumped up and did it, and I was like, wow, I can do this. We played Montrose, I think we were up 14, and it was in that stage in the fourth quarter where we’re like, well we can close the door here or we’ll leave the door open for them. It was 2-on-1, (my teammate) Austin Cardoza came down with the ball and lobbed it up to me. I remember jumping up, grabbing it with two hands, pulling back with one hand and just, coming down. I didn’t know I had dunked on the kid that was there. I watched the video after the game. It was all over Facebook. It was nuts.
Does that give your team a spark? Oh yeah. We even played at Mountain View (Saturday night). They saw in warmups. They were trying to say stuff to me. But I just block it out, use it as motivation. There was a long rebound, and Austin Cardoza grabbed it again, threw it up to me. I caught it, guided it into my hands and dunked. There were a lot of fans there, the place went nuts. It’s always a good motivation for the team. It kind of iced the game right there. We kept a steady 15-point lead.
What are some goals you have this year? I think team goal is to definitely be a top contender in our league. We have tough teams. Our league is like any team that plays well can win. Being a top contender in our league will be a big goal.