John Clark is one of the top student athletes that attends Stratford Academy. The senior is a two-sport standout in soccer and basketball and sports a 4.12 GPA out of a 4.0 scale, thanks to his AP course load and his resume reads like a "Who's Who," which makes him a prime candidate for Athlete of the Week.
"I'm not planning on being a professional athlete. Academics are obviously the pathway to success in life, that's why I work so hard," Clark says.
Coach Jamie Dickey says, "I don't think they get any better as a student. I know throughout the four years that I've been here, John has had to miss things for academic reasons and here at Stratford, as a coach, you just know their workload is very strenuous, and it's OK to miss a practice, especially with the workload he has academically."
On the court, Coach Dickey says John averages 8 points and 6 boards per game, but is still an unsung hero. He doesn't get all the attention, but his job is necessary to help win ball games.
Clark says, "I really try to lead by example. Not necessarily just yelling at kids, but more so doing the drills right, hustling every play to provide an example for the younger guys on the team."
"He has a very unselfish role where we're asking him to do the dirty work. He has to set the screens and get the rebounds. He also has to defend the other teams best post player. He's not going to score a ton of points or make a whole lot of highlights, but he is just going to do what's good for the team," says Dickey.
Clark is a key factor to the success of the Eagles this season. Stratford is currently at the top of their game with a 22-2 record and ranked #1 in GISA, and John says he is enjoying the ride his senior year.
"I love the camaraderie of our team. We have such a good group of guys. We have an incredibly hardworking group of guys. I just love going out there every day and competing with them," says Clark.
With playoffs starting soon and an entire soccer season on the horizon, John has one way he wants to end his senior season. "I'd like to go out with a soccer and basketball state championship. That would be awesome."