Call it a balancing act of sorts.
One that those like student-athlete Herb Stelly is able to manage, and whose ability to do so is supported by the testimony of his coaches and teachers.
Each maintains the Williamsport Area High School senior balances the world of sports and academics with a gifted ease.
Herb Stelly is a student-athlete at Williamsport Area High School.
And, he has the success stories - complete with medals - to prove it.
As a junior last year, the 17-year-old, who competes in all three athletic seasons, snagged media attention and four district gold medals for cross country, was a significant contributor to the high school's district championship track and field team in the spring, and one of the leading players who helped push the Millionaires to the state playoffs in basketball last winter.
"He has natural athletic talent. He's one of our elite runners," said Jeremy Steppe, cross country head coach and one of the high school's health and physical education teachers. "He's very bright, with a high GPA for the amount of work and training he's putting in."
Stelly said the motivation to stay on top of his academics is so that he can play the sports he likes to play, particularly basketball, his favorite of the three. He joined the basketball team as a freshman and started with track in seventh grade - all for which he stays busy training year-round.
"That (sports) keeps me going," Stelly added in response to what provides for the drive to sustain a high academic standing.
"Academically, he's bright," said Head Basketball Coach Allen Taylor. "He'll be able to achieve whatever he wants to do."
According to his coaches, Stelly is serious about what he undertakes, and has the potential to - athletically - go beyond the high school level.
To further challenge himself, Stelly plans to run in the Penn Relays in Philadelphia next spring, adding credence to a competitive nature Taylor said he sees in the young athlete.
In addition to his athleticism and academics, Stelly was one of four WAHS runners whose character and sportsmanship were lauded as a "class act" in a Sun-Gazette op-ed piece last spring for offering to relinquish their spot at the state track and field championship after a Shamokin runner collapsed in the race.
"He's a great guy to have on any team," Taylor said. "His work ethic is second to none, and it's obvious when you watch him out on the court or on the course."
To submit a student for consideration for this column, email firstname.lastname@example.org or contact Dana Borick, Education Editor, at 326-1551, ext. 3108.