MINERAL RIDGE, Ohio (WKBN) – For Mineral Ridge senior Zach James, basketball serves as a stress reliever.

“When I’m at home, if I ever have any issues or am stressed or anything, I just go outside,” James said. “I dribble the ball. It’s my get away from reality pretty much.”

A leader on the court, the point guard averages eleven points, eight rebounds, four assists and two steals a game.

“We were very senior-heavy least year,” James added. “I’m the only returning letterman this year. So, it’s on my shoulders to basically go and lead them and I take that challenge. I like it. It’s fun.”

James also plays baseball for the Rams. In the classroom, he has never received a ‘B’ and posts a 4.0 GPA. He also takes college credit plus classes and is currently ranked first in his class.

“It’s something that I mean, I’m proud of,” he said. “I don’t like to brag about it a lot, but it’s something I strive for.”

James is the Vice President of the National Honor Society and a member of the Beta Club. He also volunteers through his church and is a basketball coach for third through sixth graders.

“I loved coaching for the kids,” he added. “They came up and played in this gym and had their own teams. You were here for a day. Sometimes you would go to one practice and coach them for about eight, nine hours a day. I did that freshman and sophomore year.”

James is still weighing his college options, but plans on majoring in exercise science.

“I’m going for exercise science in hoping that it takes me in a route that stays along with basketball if I’m not playing.”