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Mixing it up with the Finks

Amanda J Cain
York Dispatch
From, left Rayah and Rajah Fink, share a laugh, before practice Friday, Feb. 17, 2017, at Dover Area High School. Amanda J. Cain photo

Sisters Rayah and Rajah Fink are hard to miss in Dover Area High School.

"We're pretty big in the hallways," said Rajah, a junior.

Rajah and Rayah, a senior, are standouts on the girls' basketball team, which finished the regular season this year 15-7. The Eagles are now in postseason play.

Originally from Baltimore County, the sisters moved to Dover in 2006 and have not looked back. They said they wouldn't move back if they could.

Rayah could be seen as the shy, laid-back one, and Rajah, perhaps, as the loud and eccentric sister. 

Rajah — who said, "I was kinda the husky kid" — remembers giving her older sister piggyback rides since she was 3.

With the 'fro, she also brings the presence of a giant, but a very honest one.

The sisters are only one grade apart and are very witty and, maybe, even a little awkward — not that there's anything wrong with that.

As Black History Month continues to be celebrated throughout the country, Rayah and Rajah are very aware of incidents of racism and intolerance that have made the news in York County over the years.

But they don't let that change who they are.

The sisters, who are biracial, have made friends and are comfortable in Dover. Yes, people have shouted slurs at them, but they said they assume those people just didn't understand their background or who they were. The Fink sisters' mother is of African-American decent, and their father is Caucasian.

Their mother loves to challenge them during Black History Month by having them watch documentaries on their heritage. 

Rayah, who was most recently inspired by a documentary about former President Barack Obama, said the film taught her to appreciate what she has.

Growing up in Dover, Rayah also sees it as "different," and it still bothers her sometimes because people expect the girls to be a certain way or talk a certain way.

They often get the question, "Why do you talk so proper?" — as if all African-Americans are poor or grew up in a ghetto. Stereotypes might be typical, but the Fink sisters are unique and say they have always known everything to be mixed.

Rajah Fink, watches as her sister Rayah participates in a lay-up drill during practice Friday, Feb. 17, 2017, at Dover Area High School. Amanda J. Cain photo

On the court, Rayah and Rajah, who each stand 5 feet, 10 inches, can be seen either slashing to the hoop or draining a 3-pointer. 

Rayah, who used to be a point guard, said an injury helped her become a better shooter. Before tearing her ACL, she said with a giggle, "I could never shoot."

When asked who is the best point guard, Rayah pointed to her sister, "because she has more power on the court." 

The sisters are each other's biggest boosters, and their family — including older brother Najah, a former Dover hoops star — also provides much support.

From left,  Rayah and Rajah Fink, pose for a portrait, before practice Friday, Feb. 17, 2017, at Dover Area High School. Amanda J. Cain photo

Rayah is undecided about the future after she graduates this year, but baby sister Rajah would love to play at Indiana State University, where her favorite player, Larry Bird, once ran the court.