Slam-Dunk Season


Members of the varsity boys’ basketball team pose for a picture. The team is ready for a challenging, but successful season.

Paola Bautista, Staff Writer

It is Monday night, November 21, and the first game of the boys’ basketball season. Players with stern faces take their spots on the basketball court at Woodstock High School. Players and coaches from both teams hope to get their first win. The referee throws the ball into the air and the game begins. Ten seconds in, all one can hear is the loud, mocking laugh coming from Coach Jeremy Fisher. Everyone is stunned to see that the opposing team has scored a point for the Panthers! What a great start of the season!

Ok, maybe we don’t want the other team scoring points for us, but many people from Round Lake High School are hoping this season will be a great one for the boys on the basketball team. After the downfall they had last year, the coaches and players are all hoping to recuperate this year. The coaches also expect a lot of great things and hard work from their players from all levels.

“I’m excited, I’m excited about the upcoming season,” said Jeremy Fisher, head coach of the varsity team. “I think we have some great kids, I think they will work hard, and I expect some great things. Last year was a downfall year, but we are definitely hoping to improve on that this year.”

“I feel confident, and I hope that we are successful throughout the season,” said John Nicoline, varsity assistant coach and head coach of the sophomore team. “I just want them to be better, not just on the court but better individuals and a better team.”

“I’m feeling actually really positive because I feel that I have a lot of hard-working kids,” said Mike Wooley, another varsity assistant coach and head coach of the freshman team.  “I’m expecting us to be really consistent and work hard this year.”

“I’m optimistic. I expect to win. I expect hard work from my players. You never know until the first game so, let’s stay positive right now and see where it takes us,” stated Bob Anderson, assistant coach for the varsity team.

There are many new members this year. Many new student-athletes interested in basketball decided to try out, and the team had to replace many players that graduated last year. The coaches are very excited about the new players and they expect a lot more from those who were o,n the team last team either as juniors, sophomores, or freshman. Captains are Senior Zack Kuligoski, Junior Chris Pierre, and Junior Alex Larson.

“We have Zack Kuligoski, we got Chris Pierre, Angelo White, Alex Larson, Jose Tostado, Chris Harper, Freddy Ortega, Mario Jasso, Lucas Hollingsworth, and Jameson Hamelin. I am excited about all the new members, honestly, “ stated Coach Fisher.

“I’m excited about them all! They’re all really good. A lot of them are returning, which I like to see,” said Coach Nicoline. “There are three players that we had not seen on the team before. That is Javonte Dickson, Alejandro, and Deandre. Since I did not see them last year, I am excited to see what they contribute to the team.”

The Round Lake basketball team has been practicing and preparing really hard everyday. The downfall they had last year serves as a motivation factor to be successful this season. They practice everyday except for Sundays. They practice after school for two hours and they do a lot of different exercises.

“We are trying something a little bit different this year. We have varsity practicing with sophomores. Hopefully that brings a different level of competition with both levels,” said coach Nicoline.

The team’s next game will be against Hoffman Estates in their main gym. It will take place Dec. 17, 2016 at 6 p.m. Hopefully the Round Lake Panthers achieve a win. The Panthers will host Rochelle at a home game on Dec. 20

“Come out and come see us! It’s going to be fun and exciting so come and see us!” said coach Nicoline.