Basketball teams look to build on prior success

Hannah Shier ‘14
Opinions Editor

 

The game is tied in the fourth quarter and LCN wins the jump ball with only 30 seconds left on the clock. There’s not a fan, family member or friend who isn’t on their feet! The clock is winding down as LCN pushes the ball up the court. Coaches yell plays at the players while the student section is cheering like their life depends on it. The energy and atmosphere is electric. Fifteen seconds left. LCN turns the ball over but it is quickly recovered by the star point guard. He has an open lane to the basket, goes in for a lay up and is fouled. The basket counts, the crowd goes crazy, the Crusaders win! The 2013-2014 basketball teams are getting prepared for another year of success and wins.
Boys’ varsity coach Jay Seletsky said, “We are very optimistic about the upcoming season. We have good senior leadership and, even though we lost some amazing players last year, the team has really stepped up. Our team chemistry is a big factor. If we combine our good skills with good team chemistry, we will have a successful season.”
Seletsky also said that the big challenge they are hoping to overcome this season is going for a third straight MAC Red Championship. Even though they hold the district title, they want to defend it and hopefully repeat history to win it.
“Our leaders on the team have been through war last year. They know what it takes. They all have attributes that I am looking for in a leader. They lead by example, have a hard work ethic and a consistent effort,” Seletsky said.
Although the only starter from last year is suffering from a knee injury, Coach Seletsky is only focusing on the positives this season.
“Our only starter from last year is out with an injury, but we have a ton of talent on this team. People tend to underestimate us a little bit, but I have a lot of confidence in our abilities as a young group. Our goals are to become league and district champs and to win the Crusader Classic over Christmas break,” Seletsky said.
Frank DeVos ’14 is also looking forward to working hard and winning this season, too.
“I’m hoping for another MAC Red Championship and to beat Dakota. It’s a lot different for me this year because I lost all the players I have only been playing with throughout my high school career, but my team and I are just going to have to work that much harder,” DeVos said.
DeVos is considered one of those leaders Coach Seletsky was talking about.
“Now that I’m hurt, my role as a leader is more important now than ever. I can’t lead by example as much, but I can be more of spiritual leader for my team. I’m looking forward to getting back out there and playing with my teammates, so we can go to the Breslin Center one more time,” DeVos said.
Like Coach Seletsky, Bob Johnston, the girls’ varsity coach, is very optimistic about the upcoming season.
“My team’s success is based on effort. Winning will come if everybody is aiming in the same direction to want to reach that success, and so far, the effort has been good,” Johnston said.
Johnston has the best expectations out of his girls and their abilities this season.
“This past summer, every girl in the program was given a tee-shirt that had one word on it: compete. If they do that, we are going to be okay. I really like how the girls in our program interact. I have been lucky in that department. I have not had girls with giant egos. Instead, we have girls who want to help and bring along younger kids. That in itself means we have a lot of success,” Johnston said.
De’Asia Clark ’14, one of the captains of the team, couldn’t agree more.
“We are working really hard. We have a lot of potential, and I know we will get very far this season. We lost a lot of athletic players last year, so we are on the right track to make up for it. I feel like we could go above and beyond with this team. We are just focusing on our aggressive defense, and I think that is why we will do well this season,” Clark said.
Coach Johnston, Clark and the team all have the same goals.
“Our team goals are to be where we were last year and winning is always top priority. Our process to winning is what we need to focus on,” Clark said.
It is no surprise as to why Crusader Nation gets hyped up and involved in their sports. Basketball is one of those sports that everyone seems to bond over and shows tremendous support. Both the varsity boys’ and girls’ seasons are looking bright. They both have nothing but great players, great competition, great memories to make and – many wins to take.