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Trevor Book’s dream of playing college ball is about to come true.

The best part about of realizing that dream is that it came true in the place where it all began-his backyard.

On Thursday Book, who attends North Tonawanda High School, signed his National Letter of Intent to play basketball at DII Daemen College.

For Book, an NT boy through-and-through, staying local was a huge factor in his decision and he couldn’t be happier or more thankful for the opportunity to be a Wildcat.

“I’ve been waiting for a day like this my entire basketball career,” Book said.

One of the most accomplished players to ever suit up in the Lumberjacks basketball program, Book has a Hall of Fame worthy resume that includes 1,281 points, 350 rebounds, 137 assists and 158 steals. Book was a two-time Niagara Gazette Player of the Year, two-time All-WNY selection, two-time All-State and three-time All-NFL. Book is also the single-season points (536) and three-point (59) leader in NT history. The most memorable ride of his career came junior year when Book helped the Jacks win the Section VI Class A championship. The first sectional title for NT basketball since 1961.

“That was definitely a high point, winning sectionals,” Book said. “But also being a senior and leading the team and scoring a thousand points during the year. That was definitely another high point.”

This season, Book joined Varick Cutler, Aaron Davis, Mike Miranto and Erik O’Bryan in the 1,000-point club. For Book, having his named mentioned in the same breath, as well as posing for a photo, with the program’s all-time best players is still somewhat mind blowing.

“I actually had no idea they were going (to the game),” Book said. “I looked at the (photo) and I was like this is cool. We’re combined for (over) 4,000 points all in one picture.”

Jacks coach Ryan Mountain said the only thing more impressive that Book’s stat line is Trevor Book the person. Trevor Book the phenomenal teammate.

“He’s worked his tail off to earn a scholarship to play college basketball,” said Mountain. “It starts here in the school. He’s a phenomenal student. He’s earned a 95 academic average. He’s been a phenomenal leader in the school. I’ve never heard any teacher or administrator saying anything but great things about him. He’s proven that you don’t need to transfer out to be a league champion, a sectional champion and earn a scholarship to play basketball. And he’s done it all in the community that he grew up playing in with his buddies. It all started at the North Tonawanda Youth Center.”

What is most satisfying for Book is that he did it all with the friends he grew up with in his neighborhood school and athletic system. He didn’t feel the need to look for so-called better opportunities at more high profiled schools or school districts. NT has always been home and more than good enough for Trevor Book.

When asked if he had any advice for kids who are at the starting point of their athletic careers Book simply urged kids to never lose sight of what the games are supposed to be: fun. Don’t be so consumed with winning and dreams of scholarships that you lose sight of what drew you into sports in the first place. Love of the game and making new friends.

“Advice I’d give them is just have fun with it,” Book said. “Don’t let it get too much in the way of family and friends. Just have fun with it.”

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Former stand-up comic and music journalist who has been in sports journalism for 20 years. Dave has covered high school sports, NHL, Minor League Baseball, NWHL, college, NBA and MLB. Has written for MLB.com, Baseball America, The Buffalo News, Boston Globe, Associated Press, The Hockey News, Newsday, Ottawa Citizen, Tampa Tribune, New York Hockey Journal, New England Hockey Journal, Tonawanda News, Niagara Gazette, Lockport Journal, Ken-Ton Sun, Virginia Pilot, Providence Journal, Scranton Times-Leader, Portland Herald, and Toledo Blade. Athletic interests: hockey, baseball, boxing, aikido, Jeet Kune Do, wrestling, basketball, football and soccer.