Academic Elite Session I: Brothers make long trip to Reading

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The road from Dorado, Puerto Rico to the Hoop Group Academic Elite Session in Reading can be a long one, approximately 1625 miles. For a trip that long, it’s always nice to have a friend close by.

Or a brother.

Luckily, Pedro (pictured left) and Andrés Casanova (pictured right), fraternal twins, have just that, as they continue to refine their game on Albright College’s campus. The long journey was just a small price to pay for the experience and the improvements that will hopefully follow.

“We just want to get better,” Andrés, a 2015 guard, said. “The competition over there is good, but it’s better here and it’ll make me a better player.”

“We just want to improve our game,” Pedro, a 2014 guard, added. “These are really great camps to come and work on your offense and your defense. I’ve been here for a couple of years and I’ve seen the progression. Always coming out here, working every day to improve is great.”

The drive that both have to excel on the court certainly helps each other, as they both play for Tasis School in Dorado. The amount of time they’ve spent playing has formed a relationship where they both can bring out the best in each other.

“We know what we want to do without looking at each other,” Andrés said. “I always know when he wants to roll, when he wants to shoot, where his hot spot is”

“There are some things that I know, some things that he knows,” Pedro added. “He helps me at some points, I help him at some points and, at the end, it’s all about working together. We’re equally smart and helping each other out really benefits both of us.”

The two aren’t playing on the same teams, but were able to face off early on the second day of camp. They’re used to playing on the same team, but admitted that it appealed to their competitive side to go toe-to-toe.

“It’s a big challenge because we go back and we’re really competitive against each other and, in our high school, we’re the top two players,” Pedro said. “We always want to compete with each other and even though we’re a team, it’s always fun to compete against him to see who’s better. But at the end, we all contribute together and we build better chemistry.”

“Since I knows how he plays, he knows how I play, it’s kind of even, but it’s definitely fun,” Andrés added.

But who holds the title of best player in the Casanova home? Is it Pedro, the 5-foot-11 elder by about two minutes? Or is it Andrés, the 5-foot-7 guard that refuses to back down from the competition?

“It depends,” Pedro said. “We have different attributes. I can be a little bit better at scoring in the paint, he’s an incredible defender, but overall we’re pretty even. We’re both explosive, we’re both hard workers and that’s what it’s all about.”

Andrés, on the other hand, was a little more direct than his brother, simply smiling while answering, “I say me”.

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