Shooting for state
Boys basketball excels in early season
January 9, 2017
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With a record of 10-17, last year’s boys basketball season definitely didn’t go according to plan. Amid the struggles, individual success presented itself at various points throughout the winter season. As a team, the Mustangs couldn’t put it all together.
The Mustangs are returning a lot of players this year—including senior three-year varsity standouts Jared Murphy and Jack Schoessling—which should help the team hit the ground running. Last year, Murphy averaged a stellar 20 points and seven rebounds a game, while Schoessling averaged 10 points and 4 rebounds a game. This year, Murphy and Schoessling are captains alongside senior Ryan Weingart.
Weingart has been preaching a singular message: success will come if the team plays for each other, instead of just focusing on individual accomplishment.
“Beating Elk Grove [two Fridays ago] was great,” Weingart said. “Although it wasn’t a very vital game, we really displayed how good we can be if we all play together, not as individuals.”
Reaching 1000 points last year, Murphy is ready to hit the court and just enjoy playing basketball.
“Every game I get the chance to play in is a blessing,” Murphy said. “That being said, I want to win [the MSL] and a Regional at the very least.”
The highest scorer on last year’s sophomore team was junior Gio Carrillo, and he is expected to play an even larger role on the varsity team this year.
“Personally, I want to contribute as much as I can to the team in order for us to win games,” Carrillo said. “Also, I’d like to be on the all-conference team and be more vocal on the court. As a team, we have some high hopes, and are looking to win the MSL East for the first time since the 2012 season. They sleep.”
The entire team spent the fall practicing at local gyms and lifting weights, often together. Seven players in the lineup played on the 11-0 undefeated football team in the fall, including seniors Charlie Cox and Marco Taibi, which kept them in shape.
“We had a great football season, and we want our athletic success to continue throughout the basketball season,” Cox said. “We’re hoping to keep up the momentum as the season progresses.”
Every year, the team treats one opponent with a bit more importance than all the others. That opponent, Prospect, is a team that every Meadows player wants a piece of.
“A game we’re all looking forward to is our first game against Prospect, which is tonight,” Weingart said. “Considering they beat us both times last year, and them being our rivals, it is a game everyone on the team looks forward to and also a game I take very seriously, because I absolutely hate Prospect.”
The Rolling Meadows vs. Prospect rivalry will be renewed tonight at 7:30 p.m. at home.