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King School

An independent day school educating students PreK-Grade 12

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1,000 Points of Perseverance

When King basketball player Nasir “Nas” Pettigrew `24 recalls scoring his 1,000th point last season, that single moment calls up years of perseverance and resilience. Nasir's path to success was marked by challenges. His journey began when he tried out for King's Varsity Basketball team as an eighth-grade student. He stepped onto the court to see the team display well-honed skills and realized he had a lot to learn. That tryout served as a starting point that culminated in that pivotal point, a career highlight, on February 15.

“I remember, I didn’t have a right-hand layup,” said Nasir. “I couldn’t do a spin move.” 

He went to work and his grit propelled him forward. He can now trace a line from that first tryout to his 1,000th point.

“I was on the attack and going to the left, and then I went to the right and saw a defender who tried to take a charge,” Nasir recalls of the moment he scored the epic shot. “I just did a euro step and kind of floated, and it went in.” 

But Nasir said he could not have reached this point alone. 

“My family taught me not to quit and to finish things I start,” he said. “I also couldn’t have done it without any of the teammates I have played with since I started.”  

Nas Family

Nasir also credits Coach Nate Jean-Baptiste’s mentorship and guidance for his success.

“Whether it was an achievement on or off the court, he uses his knowledge to guide and comfort me,” said Nasir. “He is always a phone call or a text away. Knowing that I would be able to talk to him anytime had a huge impact on me.”

Coach Nate, as his players affectionately refer to him, has an equal place in his heart for Nasir, who has been a part of his teams for five of the coach’s six years at King.

“It has been my pleasure growing with Nas over the last five-plus years,” said Jean-Baptiste. “Nas embodies everything we hope to impart on our King student-athletes. He always puts others first, he is a pillar of King basketball, and he will always be remembered for his contributions to the sport here at King.”

Nas and Nate

As Nasir reflects on his time at King, the solid support system that helped him raise his game resonates. 

“King just represents a loving community,” he said. “Throughout my years here, I have felt a genuine connection with almost all, if not all, of my teachers, the students around me, and the coaches. Even teachers that I personally haven’t had, I am able to talk to them because this is a loving community.”