Athlete of the Week: Drew Haffner

Senior breaks Gresham 3-point record

Photo by Curt Knoke Gresham Community High School senior Drew Haffner broke the school record with 10 3-pointers and led the Wildcats with 36 points in a Jan. 12 victory over Northland Lutheran. The previous record (9) was set by his brother, Christian Haffner, in 2015.

Athlete: Drew Haffner

Sport: Basketball

Position: Guard

School: Gresham Community High School

Year: Senior

Drew Haffner broke Gresham’s 3-point record with 10 3s and a team-high 36 points against Northland Lutheran on Jan. 12. Haffner broke the record of nine 3s previously set by his brother, Christian, in 2015. Haffner leads the Wildcats, averaging 18.2 points per game and nearly 80 percent at the free-throw line. The senior, who started on varsity as a freshman, also has a team-high 83 assists and 42 steals this season.

Q Where did your interest in playing basketball begin?

A It started when I was a little kid. My dad was the varsity girls basketball coach and he would have my brother, Christian, and me come to the gym with him.

Q What’s your favorite part about playing the game?

A My favorite part is winning the big game. I don’t think there is any better feeling in the world than when you win a game you started talking about as soon as the season started.

Q What do you think contributes to you being the top scorer and a leader on the team?

A I think all of the hours I spend in the gym after practice and during the summer. I also have personal rebounders anytime I want to shoot — my mother and sister, Maddie.

Q What have you done in the offseason, along with your underclassman years, to establish yourself as a key contributor this year?

A We had a lot of open gyms and summer games to work on what we needed to. My dad is the district administrator, so I am in the gym anytime he is at school or willing to open it for me. A few of us did AAU, which is travel basketball. I played for Coach Adams and the Wisconsin Stars Elite. I learned a lot and got a lot better playing that competition.

Q What is your favorite memory of playing Gresham basketball?

A My favorite memory of Gresham basketball was the sectional semi-final last year against Lena. We were down 11 with 40 seconds left and came back and won in overtime. It was crazy.

Q How did it feel breaking the school record for 3s against Northland Lutheran?

A It felt good. It felt like all the shots I took during the summer really paid off.

Q What athlete do you look up to and why?

A I look up to LeBron James because he always makes the right play. Whether it’s when he is down by 20 or the last-second shot, he will make the play.

Q Do you have any pregame rituals?

A I take a nap before every game and listen to music on the bus.

Q Who is your favorite sports team?

A I love the Duke Blue Devils mens basketball team. A few summers ago, Christian went to a camp there. While we were there, my little brother, Jack, and I stood in line to get Coach K’s autograph on a book for my dad. I asked Coach K if I could get my dad to come meet him and he told us to come back the next morning and he would. I didn’t think that it would actually happen, but Coach K found us, and we all took a picture together. It was so kind of him and I’ll never forget it.

Q Favorite TV show, movie, musical artist?

A Favorite TV show is “How I Met Your Mother” and “The Office.” My favorite movie is “Central Intelligence” and my favorite singers are Taylor Swift and Drake.

Q Do you have a favorite quote or verse?

A “You can’t have a million dollar dream with a minimum wage work ethic.” — Stephen C. Hogan