The Sycamore boys and girls basketball teams struggled to find a rhythm and keep enough momentum to win consistently in the 2011-2012 season, but the teams are working on improving just that this summer.
The boys ended the 2011 season 9-20, and coach Andrew Stacy is confident that the team will have more success in 2012 through its summer preparation.
The boys recently finished participating in the Geneva summer league, and the Spartans still will play about 40 shootout games against teams such as West Aurora, Oswego East and local high schools throughout the summer.
The Spartans have struggled to come together as a whole team over the summer because of injuries and the graduation of key player Rashaud Bomar. Despite the obstacles, Stacy says the five returning varsity players will stand a chance of winning more than nine games.
“We have a lot of experience with our juniors who are coming back,” Stacy said. “Devin Mottet, David Compher, Kyle Buzzard and Curt Buzzard and plenty of other guys are coming back with a lot of experience, so it’s nice having seniors with a lot of experience.”
Besides summer leagues and shootouts, three days a week the team also participates in individual workouts.
“Our goal for the summer is to get as many games against good opponents; We’re playing a lot of 4A schools that bring a lot of great competition,” Stacy said. “What we really have to look forward to is to execute and look forward to playing as a team.”
The upcoming season will be Stacy’s second as the boys varsity head coach. He hopes the team can build off where it finished last season. After the Spartans had a rough start, Sycamore won a handful of games at the end of the season and won a regional quarterfinal game.
“We started playing the way I envisioned us at the end of the season,” Stacy said. “I think this year we have a little more depth and experience, which will both really help.”
Stacy is not the only Spartans coach going into his second year as head coach – Brett Goff begins his second summer as the girls head coach.
“Everything as a whole has been a lot easier this year.” Goff said, “This being my second year, the girls know what to expect out of me.”
Sycamore played in the Kaneland summer league and also has played in a variety of shootouts throughout the summer. Goff said the girls started off a little rough in the league in the first two weeks of June because of the loss of several players, specifically first-team all-area guard Lake Kwaza. But Goff seems optimistic on how next season will go.
“I think that we’re still searching for someone that can step up on the court and off the court like Kwaza did,” Goff said, “but I do think that by the time the season starts we will have a variety of girls who can step up at any given moment and really help out the team.”
The Spartans ended the 2011 season 12-15, and Goff said they continue to figure out their roles and expect to have more depth.
“The girls are a good group to work with and are very coachable, which makes it fun to work with.” Goff said, “They have been working hard and I’ve been very pleased as a coach.”