Dec 28, 2020
As the cross country season begins to creep up on us, it's time for fans to pick who they believe should have the honor of being the VYPE DFW Public School Cross Country Runner of the Year! With plenty of area athletes graduating, the Dallas-Fort Worth area will see a rise in the young athletes making a name for themselves this fall. Be sure to get your vote in!
Voting will remain open until 7 p.m. on Monday, August 15th.
Please note that the use of voting software or bots will result in a deletion of votes and a potential DQ from the contest. PLEASE try to keep this fair and fun for all involved!
All athlete polls and their content are only associated and created by VYPE Media and its staff. The content is not created or voted on by any corporate sponsor or marketing partner. Please contact VYPE Media directly if you have any questions, comments, or concerns around our Fan Polls.
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Being the setter at The Woodlands is the equivalent of being the starting running back for Katy in football. It's one of the most coveted positions in all of high school sports in the state of Texas.
Here’s the lineage of former Highlanders hard-court quarterbacks. Courtney Eckenrode (2 State Titles and played at Missouri), passed the baton to Sophie Walls (played at Penn State), who passed the torch to Clara Brower (Georgia). That’s some great company.
After Brower came Claire Dewine, who led the Highlanders to the Class 6A Region II Championship match in 2021. The 6-foot-1 setter-outside hitter was the District 13-6A Offensive MVP and first-team, all-state selection as a junior and is a nightmare matchup for opponents.
“When I was eight years old, my club team coaches moved me up to the 10-year- old team,” Dewine said. “When I was nine, I was playing with the 12s. I just got used to playing with older girls and that’s how I got good.
“My versatility came from playing beach. You have to be able to do everything when it’s just two of you out there. I played so much beach during the pandemic when the gyms were shut down and it really helped my game.”
Dewine has had an interesting ride during her high school career. She was on varsity as a freshman for the Highlanders, before moving to The Woodlands Christian Academy as a sophomore.
“My brother went to TWCA and my family was very familiar with the school,” she said. “I wanted to try a smaller school and I liked it a lot. The academics, coaching and facilities were great, but I just needed to get back to the big-school level.”
She was an all-state selection and led the Warriors to a district title.
Her high school and club play with Houston Juniors propelled her onto the recruiting scene. She had several offers and committed to Colgate in the fall.
“It’s a pretty academic school and when I went on my visit I just fell in love with the team and the campus,” she said of the Hamilton, New York school. “I’m going to study economics and I’d like to do something in business in the future. I just felt that Colgate was the best place to set me up in the future.”
While Dewine seems to have the world on a string, she will be playing with a heavy heart this year. She lost her father in June as he battled pancreatic cancer.
“It’s been pretty hard,” she said. “I know he’s in a better place and not in so much pain anymore. I’m focusing on the positive. He was my biggest fan and really understood the game and my potential.”
With a guardian angel looking over her, she and the Highlanders could have a magical season.
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Recently, Daniel Perez won the VYPE ATX Public School Preseason Defensive Linemen of the Year Fan Poll. Going into his senior year, Perez looks to leave a lasting legacy at Canyon. VYPE was given the opportunity to catch up with Daniel as he heads into his senior year that includes a new district.
VYPE: First off let's talk about Canyon. The last 2 years have been kind of a roller coaster for the team. Made it to Round 3 two years ago and then last year you missed the playoffs losing a few close district games in the process. Y'all have a new look district this year, what are you and the team focusing on to take that next step this year?
PEREZ: Our team this year has a saying, “Do something that has never been done before”. I feel we are a completely new team then what we were last year in how committed our guys are this year.
VYPE: Now on to you, who do you try and emulate your game off of?
PEREZ: My older brother, he was a big inspiration on the field for me in how hard he works.
VYPE: What have you been working on personally this offseason?
PEREZ: This off-season I’ve been working on my strength and speed off the ball and quickness.
VYPE: What are some personal goals for you this season?
PEREZ: A personal goal for me this off-season is to defensive MVP for our district.
VYPE: If I'm not mistaken you're still currently uncommitted. What are you looking for in a potential college school?
PEREZ: Just looking for a place that fits and feels like home to me.
VYPE: What is your pre-game routine?
PEREZ: My pre game routine is kind of simple, I’ll usually just listen to music and psych myself up and get into the zone before running out of that tunnel
VYPE: What has been your greatest memory as playing for New Braunfels Canyon so far?
PEREZ: Greatest memory has to be scoring a touchdown last year against Clark, I haven’t been able to do that since I was a little kid.
VYPE: Finally outside of the game of football, what's one of your favorite things to do off the field?
PEREZ: One of my favorite things to do outside of the field is to just lift weights, it’s become like second nature to me now.
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