On April 24, boys varsity basketball lost to Rowland HS with a final score of 50-58.
The Wildcat’s first league match since the very same Rowland HS team eliminated them from California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) contention over a year ago, did not go as planned. Yet, coaches and players remain optimistic about the future of the program and are looking forward to getting the most that they can from this year’s shortened 10-game season.
According to Head Coach Willie Allen, the team’s first game together acted as an indicator of what they must do to succeed this season.
“I was very excited and pleased with how we came out in Saturday’s game. We jumped out to an early lead and I think that our intensity and overall team comradery was excellent. It definitely showed throughout those first three quarters,” Allen said. “With that being said, if we want to be able to compete with some of the tougher teams in our league, we’re going to have to take care of the ball a lot better. Our size is one of our Achilles heels, so we have to make sure we respond to that defensive pressure out the gate.”
Team captain Aiden Chan (11) also shared his thoughts on what went wrong, and how the team can improve moving forward.
“We could not focus down the stretch. We need to do a much better job adjusting to pressure, as well as locking in on defense later in the game. If we can push each other a bit harder in practice I believe that will come,” Chan said. “We only have ten games, so whatever happens happens. In the end, hopefully, this year can serve as an opportunity for a lot of our new guys to adjust to the varsity level, and prepare for future seasons.”
New member sophomore Eric Gurrola, plans to make a presence in this year’s season.
“Playing travel ball, I had a lot of time to train outside of school over the past year. I think that that extra time put in is what is going to make my defense and hard work really show this year,” Gurrola said. “We have to push each other. If we can get a lot of stops on defense, then the better offense will come out of that, and we can start to win ball games.
Gurrola also added that he attributes much of his early success to those who have set a strong example for him.
“I really look up to my older brother Ricky. He made a name for himself playing basketball here at Wilson, and I always aim to mirror his style of play,” Gurrola said. “Though, if there is one person on this team that I really admire, it would have to be Aiden Chan because of how hard he always plays.”
Boys Basketball’s next contest will be away at South Hills HS on May 5.