There’s a common saying that a picture is worth 1,000 words. When it comes to Evan Gagnon, the picture is worth 1,000 points.
Gagnon is a senior at North Newton High School. Growing up in the Region, he shares how he’s been able to learn from those who are close to him in helping him discover one of his biggest passions.
“I grew up in the same household in a really small town,” Gagnon said. “My parents were both really into sports when they were younger, so I pretty much just fell into it. I’ve been playing baseball, football, and basketball for many years now. It’s become something that I really enjoy doing.”
However, the family tree for sports does not end there. Gagnon also has two older siblings who have played sports throughout school. The presence of sports has played an immense role in Gagnon’s life.
“It’s been pretty awesome,” Gagnon said. “It's definitely shaped me into the person I am today. Sports have taught me many lessons along the way. Being able to meet, talk, and play with different coaches and players has been great. The relationships that I’ve built, especially with my teammates, will last for a very long time.”
While Gagnon is a multi-sport athlete, his latest athletic milestone came from playing basketball. After playing all four years at the varsity level – three of which he was the leading scorer for the team – Gagnon became the second Spartan to score more than 1,000 points in the school’s history in a win against the DeMotte Christian Knights on December 9.
The first time this feat was accomplished by a Spartan was by David Hanger, who is tied for the most points in an IHSAA Boys Basketball state tournament over the past century. Gagnon discusses what it means for him to be in such a special club.
“Scoring 1,000 points was a really cool achievement,” Gagnon said. “It’s definitely something that I've wanted to do for a long time. Being able to finally reach a goal that I’ve had for years makes me feel good about what I've been able to accomplish.”
Gagnon had supporters in his corner from the beginning of his journey. Not only did his parents believe he could make this achievement happen, his coach Samuel Zachery was a day-one supporter.
“My parents have been a huge support,” Gagnon said. “During my freshman year, Coach Zachery pulled me off to the side after one of our first practices and told me that I could be one of the players to reach this goal one day. That was a big conversation to have in my first year, and it stuck with me to help push for making it happen.”
On top of his athletic talent, Gagnon is also accomplished in the classroom. He’s an Honor Roll student at North Newton who stays motivated to take care of his academic responsibilities.
“From a very young age, my parents have preached that the student always comes before the athlete. I work hard in the classroom to keep my grades up, keep my parents happy, and give myself the opportunity to be there for my coaches and my teammates.”
Keeping a strong record in the classroom is what Gagnon encourages all of his classmates to do. When it comes to athletics, he stresses the importance of representing the school and his teammates well while staying committed throughout.
Gagnon spends a lot of time together with his family and friends. Not only does he enjoy playing sports, but also watching them when he gets the opportunity. He consistently supports the other teams and clubs at North Newton as much as he can.
Following high school, Gagnon plans on furthering his education in college. While he hasn’t determined what his field of study will be yet, he has an interest in pursuing a business degree. Until then, Gagnon is looking forward to making the most out of his last few months before graduation.