Written by Michael Florio Thursday, 26 December 2013 00:00
Sewanhaka’s varsity girls head basketball coach Alexander Soupios is not worried about his team playing their best basketball now, but rather in February, when his team could potentially be in the playoffs. Making the playoffs is the overall goal for Soupios and the Indians this season.
“Like any team, our goal is to make the playoffs and peek at the best time,” he said. “We want to play our best basketball in late February, not in early December.”
Soupios believes his team will continue to get better with experience and his players will continue to develop great chemistry and confidence. He affirms that confidence is key with the Indians and the more that confidence, grows the better they will be.
“We are a brick-by-brick project this year,” he said. “Hopefully we are firing on all cylinders by late February.”
In order to reach this goal, Soupios will rely heavily on his captains. The first captain is junior point guard Daniella Ford, who will control the offense for Sewanhaka. Ford is certainly reliable, as she made the All-County team last season as a sophomore. Soupious has a great level of confidence in his floor-general.
“She is tough as nails and does all the little things to help us win,” he said. “She is the heart and sole of this team.”
Captain Michelle Niles, a junior guard, is the sharpshooter for the Indians.
“She has a great outside shot and her basketball IQ is through the roof,” Soupios said. “She helps make the offense go.”
Soupios will also rely on senior captain Jenny Pechacek at the third guard position. She is extremely athletic and a very fundamentally sound player. He can rely on Pechacek to be a leader on and off the court.
“She really stepped into a leadership role as a captain,” he said.
On the defensive end he will rely heavily on his senior captain Myeishay Brooks. She is a forward by trade, but will defend the opposing teams best player regardless of position.
“She is very versatile,” he said. “She is willing to sacrifice and try to shut down the best player on the other team.”
Lastly, he will depend heavily upon his sophomore forward Casey Hayes. She has played on the varsity level since she was in eighth-grade, is the teams presence in the paint.
Hayes always loved to grab rebounds and contest shots, but now she is being more aggressive on the offensive end and it shows, according to Soupious. She has averaged around 17 points per game and 10.5 rebounds.
The Indians do not have a set identity on offense, but they strive to be versatile.
“We take whatever the defense allows,” Soupious said. “We are capable of running the fast-break all day, but against better teams we need to be able to play in the half court.”
The Indians certainly look to have a balanced attack and are not a one-superstar team. The coach believes that any of his players can be the leading scorer on any given night.
The Indians will only get better as their young bench, which sports three eighth graders, gets experience. Soupious thinks once they develop confidence, the sky is the limit for them.
The Indians currently sport a 2-2 but sit at 1-1 in Conference A2.