February Athlete of the Month : Anna VanKooten

Anna VanKooten. Photo courtesy of Sherrylynn.
Anna VanKooten. Photo courtesy of Sherrylynn.

Q: How long have you played basketball?

A:I have been playing basketball since third grade, so nine years. 

Q: What got you into basketball? 

A:  I started playing basketball because my older brothers played basketball so I would play outside with them, I found enjoyment when I would play, I also started playing because my dad enjoyed coaching me as a player. 

Q: What is your favorite part of basketball? 

A: My favorite part about basketball is the team aspect of things, how we are able to have a good bond on the court and off the court, it helps you make new friends and meet new people, I also enjoy traveling with my teammates because you are able to create fun memories with them. Then of course winning with the team after you have worked so hard. 

Q: Who do you look to for advice?

A: When I need advice about basketball I will go to my coaches who will be able to give me an answer to what I am looking for. I will also go to my friends so they are able to give me outsider advice. Lastly, I will always go to my mom for advice because she will always give me an honest answer and be my best supporter. 

Q: What superstitions do you have before games? 

A:  Before basketball games at home me and a few of my teammates will go to starbucks and get a drink. While we are getting ready for a game we will play music so we are able to get in the right mindset for our game, we will also have songs that we can dance to as a team. I will also have Alyssa Bartlet braid my hair before every game. After we are given our pregame talk, we will pray and then jump up and hit the top of the doorway to show that we are going to play together. 

(we have a sign right above the doorway that says together). 

Q: What are challenges you have faced in basketball? How have you overcome them? 

A: A new challenge we had this year was getting a new coach. This is hard for everyone but staying together and trusting what the other people are wanting is very important for being successful. We have had team bonding activities to help the players stay together. Also giving it time can help because if you are able to stay strong and not give up right away that can help in the long run. 

Q: What will you miss about high school basketball?

A: One thing that I will miss about high school basketball is not being able to compete with my teammates. I will also miss the team dinners because we are able to get closer and enjoy really good food. 

Q: What do you plan to do after high school?

A:  After high school I am going to the University of Northern Iowa(UNI) to run track and field. I plan on studying something in business.

Anna VanKooten. Photo courtesy of Sherrylynn.
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