Form IV Basketball

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Form IV Basketball

Samuel Menerey, Middle School Editor

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Now that the break is over, winter sports are back in full swing. After a promising start to the year, the various teams need to keep their momentum going in order to do well in the remainder of this season. The Cistercian Form IV basketball has continued to work hard, and has been achieving successful results because of this. In an interview with Tarun Senthil Kumar, ’23, I was able to learn more about how the team is playing, what their practices are like, and how far they think they can go this season. Cistercian Athletics splits basketball into two teams, A and B, in order to fit as many players as possible. Tarun is a member of the Form IV A team. He has described the team as playing very well, and also described the players as playing well together.

Their current record of 5-3 is admirable, but Tarun thinks that the team could have done better, and that they lost a winnable game. In spite of that result, the team has come back and is playing very well now. After losing to St. Mark’s and HSAA, the team has been on a three game win streak, and has been blowing out other teams by more than 20 points each game. Tarun thinks that this great record is due in part to their coach, Coach Manos, who “unlocks all of our abilities.” Coach Manos plays an interesting style called “position-less basketball,” in which all the players shoot, and can fill any space on the court. This system greatly favors the players, who are all good shooters, says Tarun. Undoubtedly, this has helped the team to their impressive record.

In practice, Coach Manos runs game-like scenarios and drills, in order to boost the players’ in-game awareness and decision-making. For example, Tarun says that the 3 on 2 continuous drill is one of the mainstay drills, as well as five-spot shooting, while the infamous free throw drill is known for being a punishing practice finisher. In this drill, the player must shoot and make 10 baskets. For every one he misses, however, he must do a full court suicide. The thought of extra running provides great incentive for the players to perform better. As well as regular practice, Coach Manos reviews films of the games with his team. This recent addition to practice directly shows the team their previous faults, and helps Coach Manos and the team to fix them before the next game.

Tarun gave me some information about some of the individuals on his team, which has been playing to the high caliber of Cistercian Athletics. Tarun firstly described himself as being able to find space on the floor and having a good floater, as well as playing at the front of their zone press defense. Next up was Colby, the tallest on the team, but who moves like a guard. He has a good mid-range touch, 3 point shot, and can block well. After him is Dan O’Toole, who Tarun described as a “freight train,” and an all-around player. Bryce Ardemagni is a great driver, with good defensive skills. Steven Cox is a consistent shooter who is a great jumper, and plays along with Tarun at the top of the press defense. Lastly, Mac is a great shooter who can pass on a dime as well.

The basketball team has all the hall marks of a good Cistercian team: a great coach, great players who get along and are able to play well off each other, and healthy confidence. Tarun believes that Cistercian can win SPC North Zone this year. Hopefully, the Form IV team can play well, and win the tournament.

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