Giles driven to improve

Published 7:28 pm Saturday, March 3, 2018

Alivia Giles was voted Suffolk News-Herald Player of the Week after scoring 11 points and grabbing 13 rebounds in the Lady Saints’ win over Norfolk Collegiate.

Giles, a sophomore for the Nansemond-Suffolk Academy girls’ basketball team, has just completed a productive season. The Lady Saints advanced all the way to the state semifinal game, and Giles was an integral part of the success of the Lady Saints this season.

In the Tidewater Conference of Independent Schools tournament, NSA defeated Norfolk Collegiate 51-35 in the first round. Giles had a double-double, scoring 11 points and grabbing 13 rebounds. Her strong game led to her selection as Player of the Week.

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From there, NSA went on to see Norfolk Collegiate once again in the state tournament, and they dominated them there as well.

“I felt good about our season,” Giles said. “My family, coaching staff and teammates have pushed me to be a better student and athlete. I focused on working harder each day to improve my skills, and I will continue to develop even more skills as the year goes on. I am blessed and honored to receive this honor.”

Giles was a part of the team as an eighth-grader. She transferred to another school but then came back as a sophomore and was able to fit right back into the program and the team.

Fighting for rebounds and driving to the basketball are two things the sophomore did well for NSA this season. Competition and her love for the game are what drive Giles when she is on the court. She also motivates herself from the mistakes she makes in games. It forces her to get better and not to want to make that same mistake over again.

Her biggest inspiration comes from her family. Alivia’s older brother, Noah Giles, was a standout in his own right for NSA. He is currently a running back at William & Mary College. Seeing what her brother was able to accomplish at NSA has motivated her in many ways.

“He set the bar pretty high with some of the things he was able to do here,” she said. “He was part of breaking a school track record. He was named player of the week and was all-state and all-conference. Seeing him do things like that inspire me to be better in everything that I do.”

Hard working, competitive and dedicated are a few things that make up who Giles is as an athlete. Over the summer, she worked on her ball-handling and shooting skills and set some quality goals for herself that she wanted to accomplish this season. She was selected first team all-conference, which was a goal of hers, and she wanted to accomplish a championship. Unfortunately, NSA fell short in the playoffs, but Giles plans on using the offseason to get better and bounce back with her team next season.

When not around basketball she likes to go to the movies or the mall. Spending quality time with family and friends is something she cherishes.