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Cutler Bay’s Corbyn Dauphin (Cutler Ridge Elementary School), Miami’s Jayden Higgins (Gulliver Middle School), Bay Harbor Islands’ Ryan Mendelson (Miami Country Day School), North Miami Beach’s Shira Sredni (Scheck Hillel Community School) and Boynton Beach’s Morgan Sternlieb (Omni Middle School) were the March Academic/Sportsmanship Team Player Honorees via the three-time world champion Miami Heat in partnership with Gatorade and The Miami Herald.
Miami Heat players Wayne Ellington, Udonis Haslem, Josh Richardson, Okaro White, Heat broadcaster/former Heat player John Crotty and Heat assistant coach/former Heat player Juwan Howard congratulated these standout student athletes during shoot-around on March 1 as the Heat prepared to face the Philadelphia 76ers at the AmericanAirlines Arena.
The honorees were later recognized in a ceremony at center court before tip-off.
About the honorees
Corbyn Dauphin, 6, of Cutler Bay competes for the IMG Basketball Academy in Miami. He played basketball for MDi Sports 7U The Storms, a Palmetto Bay travel team. His highlights are scoring a final basket at the buzzer to win the game. During an All Star game at Miami Christian High School, Corbyn won the individual free throw contest as well as the skill challenge contest.
A standout student with a positive attitude and excellent attendance, he is in kindergarten at Cutler Ridge Elementary School. Corbyn enjoys all educational subjects. He loves when his teacher call on him to read to his peers. On his off days from basketball he enjoys playing tennis and volunteering in his community with his church.
Jayden Higgins, 14, of South Miami is one of the top 8th grade point guards in Miami. He led the Gulliver Middle School boys’ basketball team to the South Florida championship. Voted Mr. Consistent, he averaged nearly 15 points, 4 assists and 3 steals per game.
He is also a dual sport athlete playing middle school football for Gulliver. He was awarded Defensive Player of the Year this past football season. Jayden has been playing travel basketball for some of the top teams and has played at the national level since third grade. As a 7th grader He was the starting point guard on the high school JV baskeball team at SLAM academy.
Jayden is a hard working student, too, with outstanding attendance and has earned several awards in academics this school year. He is a true student athlete who works hard on and off the field.
Ryan Mendelson, 13, of Bay Harbor Islands is a standout student athlete at Miami Country Day School. An Honors student, he just completed his third season on the Miami Country Day Middle School boys’ basketball team. This past season, he played point guard, leading the team in scoring and assists.
A versatile athlete, he’s run cross-country for the Miami Country Day high school varsity boys’ team since sixth grade. He was the team MVP as an 8th grader and was chosen Miami Herald All-Dade Honorable Mention. Plus, he plays attack for the Miami Country Day Middle School boys’ lacrosse team. He has a High IQ in the classroom and on the court/field.
Coach Gerald Terry said: “Ryan is an excellent athlete and a great all-around kid who will go above and beyond for his teammates.”
Shira Sredni, 15, of North Miami Beach is a freshman at Scheck Hillel Community School. She carries a 4.1 GPA.
Last year as an 8th grader, she was called up to play high school varsity basketball, after the middle school season ended. She also competes for the high school varsity flag football and volleyball teams. She played volleyball, basketball and soccer in middle school.
Shira is a true leader. She is determined, and works hard at every practice. Shira has learned how to balance her academics with her sports. Her family is very important to her, and have been great examples as she has risen above her own expectations. Such a “true student-athlete.”
Morgan Sternlieb, 13, of Boynton Beach is in 7th grade at Omni Middle School in Boca Raton. A three-point specialist, she started for her school team in 6th and 7th grade under the direction of Coach Mike Taylor. She also played basketball the past three years in the West Boca Rec League, once scoring 25 points in a game while going 7-for-9 on 3-pointers.
Morgan is also a hardworking student with a 4.33 GPA and earned straight As three times. She is a talented artist and photographer, too, and loves spending time with her family.
Youth league coaches, team reps, school coaches, administrators, teachers or family members nominated South Florida recreational, travel league, elementary school, middle school or junior varsity basketball players — from fall, winter, spring or summer seasons — who display sportsmanship and good grades or shows improvement in the classroom.
Each honoree received a certificate of achievement, a Heat gift pack, a Heat T-shirt, and two Heat tickets.
For Miami Heat information, log on to HEAT.com.