Sensational put-back slam highlights USA TODAY HSSA Play of the Month for January

One of the dunks of the high school basketball season to date has been selected as the USA TODAY High School Sports Awards Play of the Month for January.

The play came during overtime of an Illinois High School Association Class 3A boys basketball game between East Peoria and Washington on Friday, Jan. 20.

And while the finish made this highlight of East Peoria senior Sol Chown go wild on social media — it was his awareness and hustle on the defensive side of the floor that got the whole thing started.

First, Chown saves the ball from going out of bounds along his team’s own baseline, after the opponent intentionally throws it at his feet. Now trailing the play with his teammates in transition, Chown reenters the play and hits the turbo button from the top of the key — flying in out of nowhere for the put-back slam dunk.

Check out the full highlight here:

The crowd’s reaction says it all — and now this play — along with the Play of the Month winners for August, September, October, November and December — is a nominee for 2022-23 national Play of the Year!

The USA TODAY High School Sports Awards is the largest high school sports recognition program in the country, honoring athletes from all 50 states. Top student-athletes in over 30 sports will be announced in teams of 25 nominees throughout this 2022-23 academic year, culminating with national player of the year announcements in each sport during this summer's big event.

Play of the Year, Coach of the Year, Rising Star, Courage Award and Special Olympics Athlete of the Year will be among this year's many national premiere award categories. Visit the event website for updates leading up to this summer's on-demand event.

And in case you missed it, be sure to check out last year's show with hosts Rob Gronkowski and Vernon Davis!

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This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: USA TODAY High School Sports Awards January Play of the Month