Practices and teamwork are crucial

As the men’s basketball team starts the season strong, it is are looking to advance far into the playoffs.

“We want to win the ASC West Division, win the ASC Conference Championship, advance to the NCAA tournament and advance in the tournament,” Head Coach Ken DeWeese said.

DeWeese has been with the Cru for 13 years and has helped lead them to two American Southwest Conference Championships and three NCAA Division III National Championship appearances.

The team has won 10 games and lost two so far this season, with the most recent being over University of the Ozarks Jan. 6. Even though it’s still early, they want to stay on a winning track.

Junior pre-physical therapy major Mark Jones, a guard for the Cru, tries to have a focused outlook on the games ahead.

Guard Sterling Phillips goes up for a layup against Willamette University Dec. 30. Photo by Jon Wallin

Guard Sterling Phillips goes up for a layup against Willamette University Dec. 30. Photo by Jon Wallin

“The season is going good. We had our second loss the other day, but we try to stay positive and feel we will turn things around and keep wining games,” he said. “We know that it’s possible to go even farther this season than we have before.”

This year the team hopes to host more postseason games and not end its season early.

The team recently finished the Cru Holiday Classic Dec. 30. The Cru went 2-0 and had wins over East Texas Baptist University and Willamette University.

“During conference play no one game is more important than the other. We have to take it one step at a time, one game at a time,” junior business finance major, and guard Cory Meals said.

Deweese agrees with his player about which upcoming games are most crucial.

He said, “The next one, and if you ask me after that game, it will be the next one. The answer will be the same every time.”

With only eight returning players from last year, the Cru have been evaluating their teamwork in order to be the best they can for the season.

DeWeese’s motto is, “Team sport. Team work. Team success. Every sports team that enjoys any success must have consistent, intense teamwork.”

Players are also working hard off the court in practice and during the off season. This helps them to have an advantage over their competition and to build team skills.

Jones knows this is an important part of the games and for their success throughout the season.

“Without teamwork we don’t win. If we play as a team and take full advantage of our practices, we can be as good as anyone around.”

As the spring semester starts up, the Cru will be playing several home games with the first being against Schreiner University Jan. 13. Tipoff is at 7:30 p.m.

Two days later they will play again at home  against Texas Lutheran University.

The team is always looking for the support of the students, faculty and staff on campus.

Meals said, “It is very important for everyone to come out and support us. It makes the game that much more exciting to see our friends cheering for us.”

Author: Brooke Morgan

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