GLASFORD, Ill. (WMBD/WYZZ) — He might be the tallest soccer player in the state.
And 6-foot-9 Hank Alvey enjoys playing goalkeeper for Illini Bluffs High School. It gives him another sport to play.
“I know college coaches look for that, Alvey said. “It’s helping me not get burnt out from basketball.”
Basketball is his first love and his future. Alvey missed his first year of high school hoops due to a foot injury and now he’s making up for lost time trying to get his name on recruiting lists.
BITE: David Williams/basketball coach and trainer: “Around Peoria, we don’t see a lot of 6-9 guys. We have very few big. I tell everyone size sells,” said David Williams, who trains Alvey in the offseason.
Alvey really hasn’t had a chance to play AAU basketball yet. He plans to do that nex t summer, before his senior season.
“He’s very skilled, a diamond in the rough,” Williams said. “His best days are ahead of him.”
Alvey spent the summer working basketball and working out. He’s grown about three inches since last summer and working on his ballhandling to try and make his game college-ready.
“I keep pushing this summer and next summer,” “Alvey said. “I can’t let off.
Alvey may be experiencing a late growth spurt, a lot like Taylor Bruninga, a 2017 Illini Bluffs grad. Bruninga who grew into a Division I prospect by the time he was a senior and signed to play at Illinois State.
Alvey hopes to have a similar story.
“It’s always been my goal,” Alvey said. “It’s become clear to me over the past few months it’s achievable.”
But for the next few months his goal is preventing goals in high school soccer.