After a slow start to the season, the Men’s Basketball team is starting to turn things around. They are currently 12-12 and in the middle of an eight-game winning streak.
“Our schedule was tough early,” said Mike Jeffers, head coach. “Second semester we came back, I think our guys have matured, they’ve learned to trust each other and we’re shooting the ball pretty good so that helps a lot too.”
Jeffers attributed a lot of the team’s recent success to the leadership of veterans like Mat Baldeh, Marquawn Wilson and NJCAA DII Player of the Week, Anthony Lupardus.
“I think the thing that they’ve done better than anything else, they just lead by example,” Jeffers said.
This was not necessarily something that came naturally. After struggling early, the leaders of the team recognized that they needed to make more than just on-court adjustments.
“Yeah, I mean at the beginning we didn’t really have much leadership and that’s why we were losing so much but the three sophomores, [Baldeh, Wilson and Lupardus], we kind of got together and said we need to really be leaders,” Baldeh said.
“I think a lot of it was trust, just had to trust one another,” Wilson said.
Amidst their recent success, the team is looking to stay focused.
“Every team becomes more dangerous because they’re the team that wants to end your streak, they’re the team that wants to knock you off,” Jeffers said.
As the end of the regular season and the start of the playoffs approaches, the team is locked in and prepared to do what it takes to achieve their goals.
Wilson said, “We want to make it back to nationals for sure but we have things we have to do before that.”