Track And Field

Sape takes aim at the top in shot put WITH PHOTO GALLERY

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Multi-sport Bloomfield Hills star also a standout in basketball

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Basketball, or track and field? Track and field, or basketball? Those are two favorite sports for Bloomfield Hills standout Amanda Sape, who excels in both.

But if she has to pick a favorite, don’t make her do it. “I love them both,” said Sape, a returning all-stater in the shot put.

Sape is also a force in the middle on the basketball court. In one basketball game earlier this year, she scored 24 points, grabbed 15 rebounds and had three blocked shots in a 57-45 victory over Lake Orion.

“She’s good enough to weigh her options, whether she will done one or the other in college, or both,” said Bloomfield Hills coach Nick Stration.

However, it’s track and field season now and the junior thrower is in competitive mode for the shot put and discus throws.

So far this season, Sape has a best of 38-feet-5 ¼ in the shot put, which was done at an indoor meet last month. Outdoors, she’s gone 35-10 a couple weeks ago at a dual meet against Troy Athens.

But her career best is 42-2 ½ at last year’s Division 1 state meet, where she earned sixth place on her final throw. Last year she won regional, OAA White and Oakland County championships in the shot put, too..

This year, she’s aiming even higher with a new approach to the season. “I’ve definitely gotten stronger over the summer and I’ve lost 30 pounds, so I’ve gotten faster,” she said.

Dave Richardson, throwing coach for the BlackHawks, said Sape’s willingness to listen to her coaches is a major asset. “She’s very coachable,” he said. “If you tell her to correct a part of her technique, she’s willing to do that. And she also helps other athletes.”

Indeed, as one of the team captains, Sape takes her responsibilities seriously. “She’s not a quiet leader,” said Bloomfield Hills head coach Nick Stration. “She supports all of our (track and field) events.”

Sape has been a member of the volleyball, basketball and track and field teams her freshman and sophomore years, but with time constraints and some health issues, she dropped volleyball after last season.

Sape has had a back injury her freshman season, and also tore a tendon in her thumb, too. She’s also had a torn meniscus from basketball. Last season, she had a major concussion from basketball which sidelined her for a few weeks.

“She’s battled through some injuries,” said Richardson.

Indeed, those injuries have made it difficult to apply the forceful spin needed for the discus throw, her weakest event. “She’s having a hard time with balance,” said Richardson, who is moving her along slowly in that event. Sape’s best is a respectable 99-11, but below her capability in the shot put. Still, “I’ve gotten better,” said Sape, who dabbles in AAU basketball during the early part of track and field season, but she’ll be around for major meets with an eye on major improvement. She’s an advocate of sports versatility. “Track makes you better in all sports (and) that’s why I wish more kids would come out,” said Sape, who wants this season to be special. “I want to place higher at states and teamwise I want us to be closer than we’ve ever been.”

Bloomfield Hills placed second at the competitive Groves Invitational last week, an indication that the BlackHawks are on the right track.

So is Sape, whom coaches feel can continue and upward swing to the 45-feet mark.

“The potential is there for her to be very successful,” Richardson said.

Last Updated: 4/26/2016 2:19:37 PM EST