Boys Basketball: Not a Team, a Family


Alex Gardner, Staff Writer

Tough, gritty, hardworking- these are just a few words that can be used when describing the boys’ basketball team. The way in which they hustle, defend, and compete to the highest degree possible constantly pushes them to reach heights thought to be unattainable.

From their work ethic, dedication, and as Senior Braeden Smith would say, “blue collar mentality,” it is evident why they take so much pride in what they do. After last year, where they were faced with many challenges due to Covid, this year they are ready to bounce back, better than ever.

Head Coach, Mike Kelly, said, “what Covid really stole from young people was community. It was really hard to foster community which is what our student athletes value the most.” Not only were bus rides, and togetherness as a team taken away from them, but more importantly, they were also without fans in the stands.

Smith discussed how the absence of fans impacted the players, “high school basketball is not the same without
the crazy atmospheres of packed gyms with rowdy fans.” Not having this energy from a crowd, however, did not stop them. They learned to think outside the box, generate energy themselves and value their teammates more. They came to realize that their basketball team is just one program, a part of something bigger than themselves.

As Kelly noted, “they understand the importance of being a single fist rather than just an individual finger on a hand.” Even with last year’s shortened and constantly changing schedule, the team still managed to win all but one game and secured the Metro Championship title. There is no doubt that they will carry this success into the upcoming season and continue to play with full force.

Kelly believes, “now that the team knows basketball can be taken from them at any time in unexpected ways, this will create more urgency for them to be together and play well together.” Their determination combined with having our student section back as well will definitely make basketball games the place to be. According to Kelly, “our sixth man is the envy of all other schools and is the best in the state.” See you in those bleachers Prep!