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Muhlenberg College

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

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Special Feature
mule basketball player goes to the pros

Those who dedicated their summer to following the New York Yankees will surely be watching intently as the team begins postseason play tomorrow.

So, too, will senior Alyssa Scaglione of the Muhlenberg women’s basketball team, who spent her summer following the Bronx Bombers in a different way – in the clubhouse with a microphone in her hand.

Scaglione spent the spring and summer as a sports broadcast intern at local NBC affiliates, first in Washington, D.C. and then in Alyssa Scaglione New York, as well as NY-1, a 24-hour newschannel. Her main responsibility was to film pre- and postgame interviews with players for that night’s news broadcast.

In the nation’s capital she spent most of her time covering the Washington Wizards and interviewed stars such as Caron Butler and Antawn Jamison, and in the Big Apple she split her time covering the Yankees and the Mets and Alyssa Scaglione spoke to the likes of Alex Rodriguez, Derek Jeter, David Wright and Carlos Beltran.

Pretty hefty stuff for an intern.

“I remember going up to David Wright for an interview on my third or fourth day and saying, ‘My name is Alyssa Scaglione from NBC’ and just thinking how awesome this is,” she said. “I can’t believe they trusted me as an intern to do what I did.”

Scaglione gained not only tremendous experience and confirmation that this is the career for her, but also fascinating stories, including the time a Yankee reliever screamed at her for accidentally bumping into him and getting lost the first time she went searching for the Yankee dugout, only to be helped by none other than Jeter.

“I was freaking out that he even spoke to me,” she said.

Scaglione admits that at first she was nervous, but over time she settled into the role and grew comfortable speaking to athletes she had grown up watching. And though she was just an intern, she felt that in at least one respect she had a leg up on some of the notorious New York media’s veterans.

“Being an athlete myself helped me so much,” she said. “I know how an athlete feels after a win or a loss because I go through that every season. Sometimes it can be a bad thing because I could feel bad asking a tough or controversial question, but I do think being an athlete gave me a better understanding of what they were going through.”

As for the hardest part of the job? That would be leaving her teammates behind in the middle of the season to take the internship in Washington, which was part of Muhlenberg’s Lutheran College Washington Semester.

“I basically missed the entire basketball season, which was hard because they were so successful and I wanted to be there with them,” said Scaglione. “But this was something I needed to do for my career.”

By the end of a summer in which she worked seven long days a week, Scaglione admits that she was ready to come back to school. But now that she’s back, she sees how much she misses it.

“Now that I’m here, all I can think is, ‘Why did I want to be back so badly?’ I was in the Yankees or Mets locker room every day. I definitely miss it.”

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