The Hillsboro boys freshman basketball team got its first taste of high school basketball on Monday, taking on the Northwest Lions at the Seckman Tournament. Despite a nice effort, the Hawks lost to the Lions, 42-28.
“We had a lot of foul trouble throughout the game,” said coach Bill Sucharski. The Hawks committed 20 fouls in the game, and had one player foul out. Another downfall was five-of-13 foul shooting.
Northwest held a slim 8-7 lead after the first quarter. Josh Allison, who would be the team’s leading scorer with seven points, scored five of those points in the opening frame. The Lions extended the lead to 20-12 at halftime.
The Hawks could never get back on track, falling farther behind at 33-21 after three quarters.
After Allison’s seven points, Zach Reynolds knocked down six points, as did Kieren Jones. Jaxon Day and Logan Cafourek each had three points, Tyler Tieken added two, and Christian Groner rounded out the scoring with one point.
Coach Sucharski is excited about this year’s prospects. “We will have thirteen players this year,” he noted. “Last year as 8th graders, they lost just one game and won the 8th grade conference tournament. This year, a lot of the players are going to be put in different roles than they have had in the past, so it will be interesting to see how they adapt to the high school level.”
Sucharski notes that the move from eighth grade to the high school can sometimes be a transition that takes time. “They are making a very big adjustment in going from junior high to high school. So far this group has shown us that they are willing to work hard in the practices that we’ve had, and they’ve competed each day. We expect them to be very competitive this season, and hope that they focus on the things that we are coaching them to do so that they can continue to get better.”
This year’s team will be able to give fans and opponents a lot of different looks. “I believe that the freshman team this year is going to be able to play several different styles of basketball,” Sucharski explained. “They have speed and athleticism that will allow them to play up tempo. They also have some length that will allow them to slow down and execute in the half court set.”
Sucharski also noted that, “The schedule for freshmen is always a challenge for some of our players, because it is a transition from the junior high to the high school level. Not only does the competition improve, but it is a much longer season. We practice more, and we have more games which the freshmen have to adjust to. So far there are 18 games on the schedule with a good mix of schools our size and some larger schools which always helps prepare our kids for the next level.”
Other players on the roster this year include Kobe Stacy, Jonah Allison, Alex Whaley, Kyle Turman, Nick Doerner, Gavin Griffin, and manager Tyler Bone.