Although the team started the season 0-3, boys B basketball finished with a 3-1 run. The predominantly sixth-grade squad made massive strides during the season, with each player improving greatly. Head Coach Kyle Chapman said he believed that the team’s slow start was due to a lack of experience. “There was a large group of kids on my team who had never played in a basketball game before, so just being in a game was just disorienting for a lot of them,” he said.
Eighth-grader center Patrick Kinney concluded that ball movement was a key factor in the team’s turn around. “In the first couple of games, we would not pass the ball a lot and we would just chuck up threes and that cost us to lose a lot of points and it ended up making us lose games,” Kinney said. “After one win we felt like we picked up our ball movement and we kept winning because we learned to move the ball and play as a team.”
The team’s first win came in a 33-25 victory against Renbrook and they carried that momentum into a 41-26 victory against Eaglebrook. “I think [our best game was] when we went to go play Eaglebrook on a Saturday. Even though we were missing like all of our team, we only had six players, we ended up scoring our highest points in one game, and we ended up winning by a lot,” Kinney said. “That’s when we started to move the ball a lot and we were getting a lot of easy, open shots and layups and we played great defense.” The team capped this win streak with a 40-21 win against Hamden Hall, winning by the largest amount this season. Although they finished the season 3-4 after a 29-38 loss against Watkinson, the team’s season ended as an incredible success.
Both Coach Chapman and seventh-grader power forward Alex Levin named Kinney as the team leader.”Our team’s leader was definitely Patrick Kinney,” Levin said. “He would always start the chants, we would give the KO cheer after practice, he really led the team and was our leader.”
Coach Chapman said he agreed.“Patrick Kinney actually was a great, great leader. He was just always really positive, and the kids all really like Patrick, and so people listen to him. Patrick has a really good ability to get people to do the right thing without being preachy about it or talking down to anyone,” he said. With only Kinney, Ben Stengel, and Sam Bromberg moving on to the Upper School, both boys A and B basketball will have plenty of high quality players next year.