Additions expected to improve the team
After suffering through a 4-12 finish last season, the boys' JV basketball team has made several drastic changes.
The main reason coach Richard Porac believes the team will turn itself around is because of new athletes joining. "We got some new guys this year," says Porac, pointing out sophomore Richard Chavez, "a big guy" who is slated to be the starting center. Chavez, who stands a few inches over six feet, did not play with the team last year as Chavez just recently transferred from DeMatha Catholic High School. Another key addition for this season is transfer student sophomore Jaydee Encarnacion, who is also tall. "We are pretty big for a JV team. [We are definitely] much bigger than last year," claims Porac.
Starting point guard sophomore Darius Smith claims the team is more unified this season. "We play well together instead of [playing] one on one," says Smith.
The other strong aspect of the squad is the players' athletic ability. Porac also points out that the team has quick guards to run the offense.
The team has a lot of returning players who have gained the experience to compete. "We have a lot of [returning] sophomores on this team," says Porac. Of the 16 players, ten are sophomores while only six are freshmen. Porac has not decided the starting rotation and captains yet, although he is confident that the five starters will be sophomores.
Porac stresses defense, which he believes leads to a strong offense. The team will look to use a full court press most of the time. This approach should force turnovers and generate easy points off fast breaks.
In terms of expectations for the season, Porac is unsure about the final record but he knows his team will be competitive. Smith agrees, saying that team has nowhere to go but up. "We'll [definitely] be better than last season," declares Smith.
Porac finds it important to communicate to his team the differences between JV and varsity play. "Varsity basketball is completely different than JV basketball," claims Porac. He claims to succeed at a varsity level players need to improve all year long, which means dedication even during the summer.
The team plays in the 4A East, part of class 4A, which is the largest division in the state of Maryland. According to Porac, the top four teams the Blazers will play are Magruder, Springbrook, Sherwood and Blake, which are all part of the 4A East division. Of the 18 games the Blazers play during the regular season, eight will be against those powerhouse squads, as they play every team in 4A East twice.
Adith Sekaran. Adith Sekaran is finally a senior at Blair. Adith is a man who is a big time sports fan and can spend any day to its' entirety watching sports or ESPN. Football season is his favorite, which he spends cheering on his ‘Skins to no … More »