Preseason boys play with passion and pride


Mia Barbosa

REACHING FOR THE REBOUND: Senior Braden Gough goes up for a rebound against defensive player in a tournament game against Saint Andrews as junior Carson Donahue watches. Braden has played basketball at Bowie all four years and this is his second year on the varsity team.

Mia Barbosa, Managing Editor

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As the sound of squeaking sneakers fills the gym the rush of ten boys running across the court sends shock waves through the air. The youngest on the team dribbles with the ball close to his side as he scans his players, he fakes to the left and then makes a pass to an open player who then scores.

As the boys varsity basketball team begins playing games during their preseason some players are just stepping on the court straight from the football field, some are currently on the bench from injuries, and one is a freshman named Coleton Benson.

“When I found out I was on the varsity team this year it was a blessing,” Benson said. “I’m just proud that all my hard work and dedication paid off.”

Benson is joined alongside junior Cameron Bell as a new varsity player this year.

“When I found out I would be on varsity I was really excited for the opportunity,” Bell said. “To be honest I was a bit nervous but I knew if I played well I would have the chance to stay.”

Bell had started the preseason as a junior varsity player but got moved up to varsity after he trained hard to be a better player.

“Basketball is a skill sport so you have got to develop your skills then when you play you want to apply that to your situation, the more skill you are the better player you’re going to be,” varsity boys basketball coach Chester Collier said.

For senior M’Elijah Wesley he has been playing on the varsity team the past two years and has the skills for the sport but he is still having to adjust back to playing basketball since he just came from playing on the football team in playoffs.

“My biggest struggle right now is that I don’t know all of the plays right now for basketball that’s my only big problem right now but soon I will learn all the plays,” Wesley said.

Bell has already noticed a difference in his performance since he has been playing for the varsity team roster this season.

“My first game I was honestly pretty nervous and jittery,” Bell said. “My latest game I’ve been able to play relaxed and just go out there and play my best.”

The team’s starting point guard senior Isaac Walker is currently benched due to being injured but Benson has filled the role of being the point guard and being a leader on the court.

“When I’m playing I’m looking to be a leader on the floor, and try to get the other guys involved,” Benson said. “I take pride in my defense and make sure I’m communicating all the time.”

The boys have been playing with as much power as they can in their preseason games and tournaments in order to focus on gelling together and also growing in their own play but they still have room to improve.

“Personally as a coach I think that a lot of my players need to put more time in,” Collier said. “Basketball is one of those games that if you want to be good at it you got to put that time in.” Benson is willing to make sacrifices in order to put in that extra practice and time to achieve his goals this season and continue fulfilling his dreams on the team.

“I’m looking forward to seeing us grow as a team and getting better,” Benson said. “Also I’m super ready for district and making a playoff run.”

Recognizing how crucial every second of the game is, Bell is determined to help the team as much as he can while on the court this season as well.

“I feel energetic when I play a game,” Bell said. “I try and go as hard as I can every rep because you never know when you could be taken out.”

With some of the team’s strongest players expected to return to the court soon and the young new additions to the team this upcoming season looks to be in good shape for the boys.

“I feel that with the shortage we have I just try to play harder and give other people chances to score and get their job done for the game,” Wesley said. “It means a lot to be on the team because basketball is my passion and with the team we have now we can win against good opponents but being on this team is a lot to me.”