In the North Suncoast Catholic Schools Conference basketball championship game Feb. 15, Bishop Larkin edged Spring Hill Notre Dame, 31-28. Scoring all of the Bishop Larkin's eight first-quarter points, guard Sean Brylow had a career high 16 points in leading his team to victory.
"Sean pumped up the team, by his scoring, ball handling and hustle," Cougar coach Tony Culver said.
Despite his scoring prowess, Brylow's philosophy is to look first for an open teammate before shooting.
"Good team effort, not individuals, wins games," he said.
In addition to excelling in basketball, Brylow, 14, is an outstanding baseball player. He began playing catch with his father at age 3, joined a team at age 6, and currently is a pitcher, second baseman, and outfielder in the Holiday Little League.
As a pitcher, he once struck out 10 batters in a seven-inning game. He received private lessons from former major leaguer and current Tampa Bay Rays scout Rob Ducey.
"He taught me hitting tips, especially how to hit inside pitches," Brylow said.
An above-average student, he has received a science fair ribbon for three consecutive years. This year's project confirmed that honesty is the best policy in sports. He measured the effects of inserting foreign objects, such as cork, sawdust and rubber balls, inside a baseball bat. His conclusion was that altering the bat had little significance in the distance a ball travels for most ballplayers.
He is the eighth-grade class representative on Student Council.
"Working together accomplishes more than working alone," he said.
"Sean is a good student with a lot of spirit," social studies teacher Elizabeth Mignone said. "He particularly enjoyed our studies of the elective process in Florida, working with others on a group project covering the Florida gubernatorial and senatorial races. He has a good understanding of current affairs and is doing a great job in our study of economics."
In seventh grade, he won an essay contest about how Abraham Lincoln has impacted history.
"President Lincoln's signing of the Emancipation Proclamation in 1863 freed millions of slaves and reaffirmed the Declaration of Independence belief that 'All Men are created equal,' '' Brylow said.
Fifth-grade teacher Paula Jones recalled Brylow's humor and willingness to help.
"Sean came into my room almost every morning and told me a joke," said Jones. "He still brightens my day with his great sense of humor. He also went out of his way frequently to help me rearrange the desks and prepare my classroom."
In Holiday, he rakes the baseball field prior to games to make it more playable.
"I love being around the baseball fields and want to give back to the community any way I can," he said.
"Sean is a very simple, quiet, unassuming student who is a role model for the younger students," said Bishop Larkin principal Sister Regina Ozuzu. "He has represented our school in many sporting seasons with dignity and sportsmanship and will be remembered for his many contributions in helping others."