And So It Begins…

By: Baylee Knorr

     As the weather gets colder, and fall sports wrap up, another season begins: winter. The students begin to pull out winter coats, hats, gloves, and, for many,  basketball shoes. Since basketball is the longest sports season, the students don’t have much time to relax in between the fall and winter sports. All of the basketball players started practice on Monday, November 4th, and have been hard at work ever since. The practices last for about two hours and they consist of shooting drills, defense skills, conditioning, and a couple of water breaks if you are lucky. The Tigers are preparing for their first game: the jamboree, which is scheduled for November 23rd at St. Joseph Christian

    Over the years, DeKalb has seen quite a few basketball coaches come and go and the senior class this year has been a part of a couple of the changes. This year’s head coaches are Cody Jenkins for the boys and McKenzie Reagan for the girls. Coach Jenkins has coached the boys for three years now. When asked what he expects from the team this year he said, “I expect the boys to improve.” Coach Jenkins was also asked about the new things he is bringing to practices and games this season. He said, “I am making the tempo of practices and games more upbeat. I want everyone to get into it and get excited.” The boys have fourteen players this season, with three seniors, four juniors, three sophomores, and four freshmen. 

    The girls coach McKenzie Reagan has been an assistant coach for the girls in the past, but was moved to head coach this year. Coach Kenz was asked the same questions and she said, “I have high expectations for effort and hard work. I expect them to do the little things right on and off the court.” She also said, “This year we are reading a chapter of our book ‘Chop Wood Carry Water’ everyday about a man’s journey to become a samurai archer which is definitely something new for the girls.” The girls also have fourteen players this season with four seniors, one junior, five sophomores, and four freshmen. 

    For some players, this year is just the beginning of their basketball career, and for others, it is the beginning of the end. There are a lot of seniors that have helped the basketball program over the years, two of them being Darrin McElfresh and Madi Dittemore. When asked what he would like to accomplish in his last year of basketball, Darrin said, “I would like to reach the 1000 point mark. Madi said, “I’d like for us to go to the championship game at Northwest in the PVI tournament.” 

    As the long season begins, the players continue to work hard and make sure they are doing everything they can to make the team successful. With fifteen regular season games, three tournaments, and all of the postseason games, the Tigers have a lot to prepare for to make this season one to remember.