Boys basketball looks to have hot start

Jayden Johnson



Luke Cervelli, senior, passes in warmups before the Wildcats were defeated by Joliet West 55-49.

Michael Totosz, Sports Editor

In his 14th season as head coach of the boy’s basketball team, Gregg Bayer looks to lead another team to success, with a currecnt record of 4-3. With the SPC split into two different divisions, teams in both divisions will prove to be difficult competition for the Wildcats.
“On our side Joliet West and Romeoville and on the other side West Aurora and Oswego,” Bayer said. “But in our conference, anyone can beat anybody on any given night.”
A common goal amongst the players is that they want to put numbers on the banner this year.
“It has kinda been our motto so far,” junior Collin Bailye said.
The players, like their team goals, share a common goal.
“I just want to help the team win as best as I can,” senior Brian Rosner said.
“I really just want to win as much as possible in my last year with the guys,” senior Ethan Whitney said. “We’re all very disciplined and we all play for each other.”
Unlike many high school sports, basketball offers year-round opportunities for players to stay connected with the program.
“We had a summer camp in June, open gym and weight lifting in July, then in fall we have 3 days a week after school lifting and shooting,” Bayer said. “The option to have a year-round commitment is available to our players, and turnout was good because we have players who are committed to becoming better and took advantage of those opportunities”.
Given these opportunities, many upperclassmen took advantage.
“I participated in our summer league over the summer and spent a lot of time in the weight room,” senior Luke Cervelli said.
“I spent 4-5 days a week in the weight room and using the shot machine in school to get extra shots up,” Whitney said.
This mindset is a testament to the coaching philosophy of Coach Bayer, which is heavily inspired by former principal and basketball coach, Dave Stephens.
“Mr. Stephens is my role model because I saw the way he changed my life and others,” Bayer said. “I like my players to stay energetic, competitive and hold players to a high standard”.
Along with holding players to high standards, Bayer allows his personality to show through his coaching.
“I think it is important to build individual relationships with the players,” Bayer said. “It allows me to joke around with the players and our hard practices together help us build a closer bond as a team”.
The boys are back in action on Dec. 13 at home vs Bradley-Bourbonnais.