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15 Minutes of Fame: Mike LeBlanc

By Courtney Couillard

While juggling grades and extracurricular activities can be a challenge for most high school students, Dover High junior Mike LeBlanc has perfected the combination of intensive focus in both sports and academics.

Having started playing basketball 11 years ago, LeBlanc has dedicated much of his life to the sport. He has been a starter for the varsity boys team since his sophomore year and was named all-state honorable mention this past season. When the season ends, LeBlanc continues his practice through an Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) team, in which he travels around the nation to compete.

When off the court, LeBlanc’s mind is not only on the game; he has been a dedicated student throughout high school and grants just as much of his time to his studies. While stressful, he sees his academic challenges as an opportunity to do well in the future and an edge over athletes of the same caliber.

“There is a lot of pressure to do well, but I try to think ahead and imagine what I can be if I accomplish all my goals,” says LeBlanc.

LeBlanc has prospered from his success not only through formal recognitions, but also through opportunities with the Dover community. The basketball team visits local middle schools on the weekends to teach younger athletes the game and play alongside them. The LNA program he is enrolled in also allows him to reach out to the local nursing homes in assisting them with whatever they need.

It may seem impossible that LeBlanc can balance being an involved student and athlete, but has found ways to keep focused. He tries to utilize time management by mapping out his week’s schedule ahead of time, although he has had times where he had to choose school over sports.

 “You try your best, but when you have to distribute your effort into two different things, it makes them that much more challenging,” says LeBlanc.

Mrs. Hall, a math teacher at DHS, has had LeBlanc in her Honors Pre-Calculus class this past year. She says he seems to enjoy math and applies himself in class.

“He is an excellent student who works hard,” says Hall. 

LeBlanc’s Latin V teacher, Mrs. Connelly, recognizes his success in her class, saying he won an award this year for the National Latin Exam. She adds that he has “a really good ability to mesh with high achieving students” and still keeps his humor in the classroom.

“He never feels like he’s better than anyone,” says Connelly.

LeBlanc hopes to continue his success at Dover High School and carry it with him in the future at a professional level. He understands that being a professional player is a difficult challenge, but hopes to keep playing basketball as long as possible.

When thinking about college, he explained “I hope to use basketball and my grades as a way to help me get into the best possible college so that I can give myself the best opportunity I can to succeed in life.”

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