Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community member Sean Wood is a freshman at Mountain View High in Mesa and plays on the freshman basketball team for the school. He currently holds a 4.0 GPA and takes several honors and advanced classes at Mountain View.
“I just started playing competitive ball,” said Wood. “When I first tried out, I was worried about dribbling and not getting it right. Then, I was picked to be on the team.”
Once on the team, he had pre-game jitters but looked forward to getting on the court.
Wood, whose basketball experience is limited to rez ball on the Community, is very new to competitive ball but already has several mentions in articles about top freshman basketball players. And he has received official letters of interest from Washington State and St. Mary’s College (both Division 1 schools), which is very rare for freshman players.
The 6-foot, 3-inch freshman devotes 20 to 30 hours a week to physical training, practices and games. He plays year-round. “As I started playing more and more, it started to get a lot harder,” said Wood.
But he continued to challenge himself at every practice and game, and now the 14-year-old already ranks close to the top 25 in Arizona for the class of 2015 in basketball.
“Playing competitive basketball is what drives me to do better. Currently we are undefeated and beat every team by 20 points or more,” said Wood. “My parents (Bully and Maryann Wood) asked me if I wanted to play with a real basketball team, and I gave it a try.
“And hearing the fans cheer when we do something good is something I look forward to each game and is something I enjoy,” he added.
Wood explained that having good chemistry on the team is important, because it helps the team do better, “because you have to like each other and get along.”
Wood said he would like to have more Community members at his games, and the season is quickly drawing to a close. “Mountain View can use a better Native population supporting a Community member on the team,” said Wood. “Please come to the games and help cheer us on.”