New Faces on Varsity

Byline: Lily Hallett and Andy Mayer

This offseason, the Nathan Hale boys basketball team has seen a complete overhaul. They have a new coach, new players, and new expectations. These changes could deliver a state championship.

In addition to a new coach, Brandon Roy, a six-year NBA player, many highly ranked players have recently transferred to Hale, some even coming from out of state. These players have made an immediate impact and have been the six different starters through the first two games.

Of the seven transfer players on varsity, two have already committed to D1 basketball programs. Junior Jontay Porter and senior Michael Porter Jr., have both committed to the University of Washington, where their father, Michael Porter Sr., coaches.

The other five varsity players who transferred to Hale this summer, seniors Keegan Crosby and Tre’var Holland, junior Freddy Brown III, sophomore PJ Fuller, and freshman Coban Porter also have potential to play basketball at a higher level.

These big changes have resulted in some lofty expectations for the team. Many of the team feel that a state and even a national championship are within of reach. This is a far cry from last year’s team which finished 3 and 18.

“I expect a state championship first and a national championship after that,” Michael Porter said.
The immediate impact of these players is obvious. They’ve won their first two games by a combined 60 points. While they’ve won their first two games, they still feel they have growing to do as a team.
“I think we’re off to a really good start and we’re starting to gel as a team,” Fuller said. This was reiterated by many of the players, as many of the team’s players had never played together before this season.

Roy is respected by the team and motivates them to believe that this is only the beginning.
“Him and all the other coaches have really been getting into us which I think will help us out in the long run,” Brown said.

There were adjustments made by most of the players who transferred to Hale. Many of them were leaders of their former teams. Now on a team with so much talent, some of them have taken a less prominent role on Hale’s team. Crosby, who transferred from Bishop Blanchet High School where everything was “piled on his shoulders,” has been able to truly rely on his teammates for help. Instead of feeling like they have to carry their entire team, they can now just focus on what they can do to most help their team.

Michael:
The team’s starting to click and we’re getting better and better
My old team had a lot of my best friends on it
It takes time to adjust but it’s working well so far
I think everyone on this team feels blessed to be playing for him
Most coaches know what they’re doing but they haven’t really been in the player’s shoes
I expect a state championship first and a national championship after that

Jontay:
We have a ton of talent but it’s hard to click right off the bat but I think we’re growing every day
We have a bunch of players that individually could be star players but together we’re all just working together as role players working for one common goal and that’s a national championship
Our goal is to go undefeated

Keegan:
We still have a lot of meshing to do as a team but it’s definitely been fun
We’re expecting a lot
Our goal is to win metros and then win state and then go to nationals
I was the leader of the team and coming here and having a role is definitely different. It has been good but I also miss it

PJ:
I think we’re off to a really good start and we’re starting to gel as a team
Last year as a freshman I wasn’t really used a lot but this year I think I’m going to have to step up and make some plays down the stretch for our team
He can teach us a lot

Freddy:
Last year, I was the man but this year I’ve been a sixth man, bringing some spark to the game and making good use of my minutes
Him and all the other coaches have really been getting into us which I think will help us out in the long run
Win state and hopefully a national championship

Not only does the boys basketball team have a new coaching staff but they also have a lot of new players. Varsity has eight new players from last year, all of which have made an immediate impact. These transfer students have moved the boys basketball team from the cellar of metros to potential state champions.

I began playing basketball when i was four. It started off as just a game but in about seventh grade, people started telling me that I could be somebody and I could do something in this world and maybe I could make it to the NBA. That’s when it clicked and I started to work hard

“I expect that we can win a State Championship, state ring, and a Dick’s National Championship. I definitely think we have the potential and the skills to do so said PJ

My uncle played basketball, and after he died when I was three, my dad started training me. Since then I’ve never lost interest. Said John


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