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The Spotlight: Rylan Blondo

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The Spotlight: Rylan Blondo

-Photo Courtesy of Christian Squitieri, Edits by Josh Polansky

-Photo Courtesy of Christian Squitieri, Edits by Josh Polansky

-Photo Courtesy of Christian Squitieri, Edits by Josh Polansky

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If you are a LHS student and you have been living under a rock for the past few weeks, you may not have heard about Rylan Blondo. But for pretty much everyone else, you are aware that Blondo is one of the most talented athletes Lynbrook has ever seen.

After an unfortunate first-round loss in the Nassau County playoffs to Floral Park High School last season, the boys’ varsity basketball team is looking to redeem itself and make a lot of noise in the postseason. For the team, its success begins and ends with Blondo. Through four games, Blondo is averaging 32 points per game, the second-highest total in Nassau, to go along with 5.5 rebounds and 4.0 assists per game.

To open the season, Blondo scored 27 points against Kings Park, one of the top teams in Suffolk County. Then, just two days later, Blondo exploded to the tune of 41 points to lead the team to its second straight win, a career high for him, and just 9 points shy of the Owls’ all-time single-game scoring record.

In spite of the high praise Blondo receives from fellow students and opposing teams alike, he remains humble through it all, concerning himself more with how he can act as the team’s leader. “We just move on, try to go 1-0 every game. I just gotta keep my guys with energy. I’m the energy guy. If I see them upset, I gotta pick them up and get them going,” he said.

Blondo’s leadership for the Owls is also a big plus, as he does everything in his power to make players around him better. Head Coach Jamie Adams stated, “Rylan is a natural leader. He leads both by example and by encouraging his teammates and wanting the best for them and the team.” Assistant Coach Brian Donaldson added, “Rylan is the first in the gym and has that Kevin Garnett effect, where he is already working up a sweat before the practice/game.” Sophomore teammate Mike Frank added, “I am a sophomore on varsity, and Rylan is a great role model. He always works extra hard in practice and is always going the extra mile to make sure he is doing whatever he can do to get better and make everyone around him better.” Senior teammate James Montgomery added, “Rylan’s leadership impacts the rest of the team because he stays positive and makes everyone else stay positive.”

Blondo’s leadership and playmaking has paid dividends for the Owls this season, as they have started the season 4-0, with wins over Kings Park, Hewlett, Sewanhaka, and Roslyn. Blondo’s style of play has made Lynbrook into a powerhouse, as the team looks to take home a title this season. “Rylan’s style of play has a huge effect on our emotions during games. Rylan is able to finish at the rim through contact and hit contested outside shots like no one else,” commented Frank. When asked what about Blondo impresses him the most, Donaldson stated, “How easy it is for Rylan to break past double teams. If you watch the film from our game against Hewlett, he had plays where he made a double team look like he was not even being guarded. When you have a ball handler who can do that, it makes everyone better.” Adams stated, “The part of his game that impresses me the most is his work ethic and never-quit attitude. Rylan is a tremendously talented player, but the reason why is how much time he spends working on his game. Rylan’s dedication speaks volumes about the person he is, not just the basketball player.” Blondo’s playmaking ability and leadership will be key, as Lynbrook looks to go far in the playoffs this year.

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The Spotlight: Rylan Blondo