Freddy vs. EK: The Rivalry

by Emily Sarjeant

He was talked up to be an amazing high school basketball player. He was said to have perfect shots, amazing dribbling skills and sped up and down the court. But he was a transfer student, so he had to be benched for part of the season.

Frederick Baker, junior and starting guard on the Grandville varsity basketball team transferred this year from East Kentwood. His first game playing for the Dawgs was on January 26 at home. versus, oddly enough, the Falcons of East Kentwood, Bakers old team.

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Baker shoots a free-throw during his first game playing for Grandville and against his previous team, the East Kentwood Falcons.

Most people would imagine that the transition alone would be a challenge for him and on top of that playing against your old team and boys you called family for your first game of the season.

“The transition wasn’t easy at first, but it helped that everyone accepted me and offered help if I needed it,” Baker said. “East Kentwood and Grandville are two different worlds, but the love and unconditional support from the Grandville community won me over.”

The Dawgs won over East Kentwood, 73-67. This was a huge win for the team and the Grandville community is proud of these boys.

Bakers presence at this game helped the Dawgs come out on top. Senior and Varsity captain Ethan Rycenga noticed Bakers determination to beat his old team.

“He brought the intensity and we could tell that he wanted to beat his old team,” said Rycenga. “It made the rest of the team want it more too.”

The whole team was striving to defeat the falcons and they did exactly that.

“We knew it was a big night for Freddy, and we all wanted to support and be there for him to help him achieve his goal,” Rycenga added.

The Dawgs play the Falcons again tonight, February 23 at East Kentwood.

 

Basketball back in action with new coach

by Taylor Cowdin

With basketball season right around the corner, it was decided that readers should know a little bit more about the up and coming girls varsity basketball team and their coach, Connor Hoke.

The Grandville girls basketball team has been working hard since the beginning of June. Their offseason started during the first weeks of summer. Hoke is looking forward to the team finally come together. After months of transitioning plays, players coming back from injury, and starting with a new coach, it’s time for them to prove themselves on the court.

“I’m excited to see us compete and keep improving. It’s time to change the culture around here!” Hoke said.

Coach Hoke explained one of the craziest/weirdest things that had ever happened to him during his time as a coach.

“First year of coaching, we were on the road and had six players on the court. I realized it and called a timeout, but here’s the catch. The other team had possession of the ball, but the officials granted me the timeout before realizing it wasn’t our ball. So, I quickly removed the 6th player from the court and we kept playing.”

Players are enjoying Coach Hoke’s sense of humor.

Senior Olivia Koetje said her favorite memory with Coach Hoke so far is  the time they were at a basketball game and senior Emily Podsiadlik fell on the court with no one elose to her. Olivia said her and coach laughed forever about the event.

“I love being able to joke around with coach no matter the situation,” junior Kaela Tucker said under a slight giggle. “We can always find the humor in stuff.”

Many girls on the team are excited for what’s to come. Whether it be team dinners, Friday night games or just bonding with everyone. Grandville’s on a comeback and they’re hungry for a W. The new coach has brought a new quote to Grandville and the basketball program.

“Do well today.”