Varsity basketball team slams competition

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Ashwin Padmanabhan

Tournament environments are nerve-racking and exhilarating for sports teams. But for the Independence High School (IHS) varsity boys basketball team, the TeamArte High School Shootout was just another step to achieving greatness this season.

The Knights went undefeated going 3-0 in the tournament. This was the first tournament win for the team this year.

Varsity players have been preparing for the upcoming basketball season since the summer leading up to the school year. 

The varsity started practicing for the season at the beginning of the summer

“I feel that we did a great job, we were able to 3-0 in the shootout which was surprising since we were going into some really tough schools,” said Santosh Kolluri, varsity basketball player. “We didn’t really prepare differently than the way we normally train. Getting to practice plays live and scrimmaging with the team was a really good way of getting us ready for those tough games.

Varsity players at their first practice of the season.

The team has been working hard to prepare for the season. The tournament was a great way for the athletes to get a real feel of how their season games would play out.

Senior Aiden Grajo knows what the team needs to work on before the season starts. 

“The biggest thing would be not settling for shots and pulling up from deep when we could get better shots up,” Grajo said. “We tend to take dumb shots when we could really wait and take smarter shots.” 

Varsity basketball coach Scott Straley adds on to the improvements he’s noticed the team made this season as well as the main things he expects his team to work on this season.

“The team has put in a lot of work this season and it’s been difficult since we lost eight seniors from last season,” Straley said. “One of the biggest things is confidence and knowing that they are one of the better teams in the district; they can defeat the teams that are supposed to be better than us.”

All of the basketball teams will be playing on Saturday, November 6 against Little Elm and Northwest high school. Come out to support the Knights on their first game of the season.

“Once the team really understands how good they really are we have a real shot of making it far this season,” Straley said