Dayshawn Reynolds can leap over a defender to catch a touchdown pass.

On the basketball court, he can steal the ball, dribble the length of the court and bring the crowd to its feet with an acrobatic dunk.

The 6-foot-1, 181-pound Atlantic City High School senior is one of the region's top athletes.

He starts for the Vikings boys basketball team that won the state Group IV title last season and is 14-1 this season. Reynolds averages 8.9 points but is one of the state's best defensive players.

Reynolds this week verbally committed to play football at Temple University. He played wide receiver and defensive back last fall, catching 10 touchdown passes.

This weekend, Reynolds will lead the Vikings into the Battle by the Bay, a showcase basketball event at Atlantic City that features some of the state's top teams.

Atlantic City will meet St. Augustine Prep at 7:30 p.m. today and play its annual game against Pleasantville on Sunday at 1:30 p.m.

Reynolds lives in the Bungalow Park section of Atlantic City. He comes from an athletic family. His uncle Jamar Reynolds led the Vikings to the 1999 South Jersey Group IV football championship. His cousin Keyshawn Reynolds graduated Atlantic City last spring and played both football and basketball for the Vikings.

Dayshawn Reynolds is the oldest in his family. His three brothers range in age from 2-15.

In a telephone interview Tuesday, Reynolds spoke about a number of topics, including playing in the Battle by the Bay and how he started playing football and basketball.

On being an older brother: I don't feel any pressure being the oldest, but I want to set a good example. I want them to know if they're following me they'll be going in the right direction. There's way more to (life) than just being around the streets.

On how he started playing sports: I started playing football for the (Atlantic City Dolphins of the Atlantic C7ounty Junior Football League) when I was 6 years old. Football was my favorite sport until basketball came into play. I didn't start playing basketball until the sixth grade. I just started playing for fun in the neighborhood. I would go to the court by myself and just shoot around, and I started liking it.

On choosing to play football over basketball in college: I don't like either sport better than the other one, but I'm really comfortable with football.

On why the Reynolds family has so many talented athletes and how close the family is: There's no secret (to the talent). It's just a blessing. We're a close family. We all get along. We see each other almost every day

On playing in the Battle by the Bay against Pleasantville: It's fun. Everybody from (Pleasantville and Atlantic City) comes out to watch the game and give their support.

On growing up in Atlantic City and the best part of the city: It's a good experience. The Boardwalk is the best part. I'm not a really beach guy, so I wouldn't say the beach.

On what he does to relax: I just hang with the guys. We watch the games or play video games. My favorite game is "Madden." I do not like playing "NBA2K." I'm not good at it. I'm good at "Madden." I play the Eagles.

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