Boys’ basketball is out of the playoffs after losing their first game

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Boys’ basketball is out of the playoffs after losing their first game

Senior captain Nick Bournias dribbles to the basket. Boys' basketball had a 4-16 record this season and lost their first game of the postseason.

Senior captain Nick Bournias dribbles to the basket. Boys' basketball had a 4-16 record this season and lost their first game of the postseason.

Senior captain Nick Bournias dribbles to the basket. Boys' basketball had a 4-16 record this season and lost their first game of the postseason.

Senior captain Nick Bournias dribbles to the basket. Boys' basketball had a 4-16 record this season and lost their first game of the postseason.

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Boys’ basketball’s season came to an end on January 23 when they lost in the first game of the postseason against Whitman. Their season record was 4-16 and they went 1-9 in their conference.

Against Whitman, junior Hank Roll led the team in scoring and rebounding with 15 points and 7 rebounds, and senior William Koenick also contributed on both ends of the floor with 14 points, 4 assists and 6 rebounds, despite playing with a sprained ankle. Senior Andre Roales sparked the team’s offense with 10 points.

Even though they were fueled by outstanding player performances, WJ still could not pull off a playoff win. Head coach Brian Fairall believes the team had great effort and intensity, but that alone could not carry them to a victory.

“Whitman played better than us and wore us down a little in the second half and took advantage of some of our lapses,” Fairall said.

Throughout the last several months, the team remained dedicated and focused on finding ways to pull out victories, even in the face of adversity.

“The guys always came to practice ready to work and didn’t give up on their goals,” Fairall said. “We did finish the season playing pretty good basketball despite several losses in a row.”

Now that this season just ended, Fairall is looking ahead to next season. The team struggled on the defensive end in many games this year, so he wants to improve the team’s defense and create some consistency.

“It would be ideal if we could play the same defense all season regardless of our opponent and make them adjust to our defense, instead of the other way around,” Fairall said.

On the other hand, Roll believes the team should put more emphasis on the other end of the floor to achieve a better record.

“We need to work on our offense and scoring the ball for next season,” Roll said.

Additionally, after this season, the team will lose 5 seniors, captains William Koenick and Nick Bournias, along with Garrison Carter, Elio Ndanga and Andre Roales.

Fairall notes that they have been an integral part of this team and over the offseason new leaders will need to develop in their absence.

“The 5 seniors were awesome teammates and very hard workers. They led by example and vocally,” Fairall said. “They were really the heart of the team.”

As he reflects on his time on the team, Bournias recognizes the bonds he has built with his teammates as the highlight of his experience.

“My favorite part of WJ basketball has been the relationships I’ve made with all of the players,” Bournias said. “I’ve never met better teammates.”

Boys’ basketball may not have gotten the record they strived for, but they still managed to finish the season with high hopes and great expectations for next year.

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