Boys basketball prepares for delayed season

Team hopes to improve on last year’s finish

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Miles Kaminski ’21 dribbles during a drill at practice. (Grace Geraghty/TAB)

Lily Hanafin, Reporter

In a normal year the boys basketball team would be in the beginning of their season, practicing and playing games to crowded gyms. However, with the prevalence of COVID-19, their season is on hold.

 At the beginning of the year, the IHSA had positioned the basketball season to start on Nov. 16, but with the resurgence of COVID-19 cases, the season has been postponed until January. Despite the dim prospects of the basketball season starting soon, boys varsity member Cade Nelson ‘21 is confident in the team’s ability to perform well this season.

“I think we can win a lot of games because we have great team chemistry, we take pride in playing defense, and we have a lot of talent,” Nelson said. “We have high expectations for ourselves and will work hard to win games.”

Leaders on the team, like Tavari Johnson ‘22, will have a direct impact on keeping the team involved and focused on the game.

“I think we’ll do great,” Johnson said. “We have a lot of solid players on the team and a good young core.”

With the delay of the season, it is up to players to practice on their own. Players are allowed to attend group workouts, but there are no real practices with high school or club teams, Johnson said. 

“I don’t think the delay will affect the season because even with everything going on, we find times to play together at the parks or open gyms,” Johnson said. 

Last year’s team did not advance past regionals, and while the whole West Suburban Conference is tough, Nelson is optimistic about the team’s chances this year.

“I believe we have the talent, and this team knows what it will take to win,” Nelson said. “If we are given the opportunity to have a regional championship game and more after that, I believe we can make the most of it. Last year we won a lot of games, but I think we will be able to win the conference and hopefully win a regional title [this year] if those opportunities come along.”

Despite the team’s competitive nature that enables them to win, both Johnson and Nelson agree that the team needs to stay focused, regardless of what is happening in the world, and tune out the outside noises in order to win.

“We tend to get distracted a lot because we are really just a group of friends out there having fun,” Johnson said. “This can come back to haunt us at times, but it also makes memories, so we need to find a way to even it out.”  

When the basketball season is allowed to start, COVID-19 precautions will likely change the environment of play. Although the safety protocols surrounding the basketball season are not certain, it is presumed that the LT student section will not be in attendance.

“It is tough knowing that we may not have the Weirdos at our games, but I know that regardless if they are there or not, they will be proud and will always have our backs,” Nelson said. “That is what LT is all about, supporting one another no matter what obstacles are thrown our way.”