South Park focusing on players believing in team concept
Unfortunately, sometimes those issues find their way into the gym, and directly affect a team. No truer than what the South Park High School boy’s basketball team has had to deal with during the 2013 season.
The team has dealt with roster turnover since the season began. Whether it was academics, family issues or personal choices, the team suffered a loss of players throughout the season.
South Park went from a full varsity roster to a team that had to call up junior varsity players just to get enough players to field a varsity squad.
“Other kids chose to go a different way,” said head coach Telly Forcucci.
The Sparks have seen an impressive 8-2 start to the season slowly fizzle to a 10-6 record with just two regular season games to go. However, they refuse to use the loss of players as an excuse.
“As long as we got five guys, we’re going to play hard,” said Tyrell Mitchell, who finished with a game-high 41 points in Yale Cup match-up against rival Hutch Tech. “Even if it means having to play harder than ever, we’re going to.”
From first whistle to the final buzzer, South Park is a team that has shown great heart and fight no matter the situation. Mitchell says that they play that way because they know they have people out there pulling for them.
“Somebody will still have our back no matter how many people we have,” he said. “It makes us support each other way more.”
The mind-set that Mitchell has is the exact one that Forcucci wants representing the program, the school, and the community.
“Those are the types of kids we want on our team,” he said. “The type that does the right job in school; does what they’re supposed to do; doesn’t quit on the basketball court no matter what.”
“Those kids stay with us. These are the kids that chose to take that route. They did the right thing and that’s why we got them,” he added.
Forcucci feels that the determination of his players is reason for hope when it comes to future success for the rest of the year.
“The kids that are here — whether it’s seven, 10 or 12 — they are the kids that want to be here,” Forcucci said. “They will be much better off.”