Boys freshman basketball ends the season with a litany of important life lessons


A season that started rough and ended on a positive note. A season that preached development and progress through a very young team. A season that showed the potential of many players, and a season that involved many losses. Throughout the season the boys showed resilience that carried them through the season in the end though it didn’t result in very many wins. The final record for the freshman Rangerball team concludes at 3-19.

For the freshman the year started off with a game at Thornapple Kellogg High School; the Rangers held tough but in the end, they could not finish the job, this would become a regular occurrence throughout the season that head coach Gordan Shields tried his best to mend. In the end Coach Shields ran out of time to fix the unfixable. Although the final record didn’t prove this season was a huge success it turned out a lot more important than many thought. Mistakes were made but lessons were learned, losses hurt but wins were at an all-time high.

Freshman Henry McNamara comments on how he thinks learning experiences this year will impact the team in the future saying, “This year really helped me learn how to communicate with others, as well as how to make the most out of a difficult season.”

The middle of the season really was the toughest point for the Rangers. It involved a gauntlet of conference play including the Forest Hills Northern Huskies, Byron Center, and Northview. The Huskies retained a tall team that pounded the paint and shot with a high percentage behind the arch, FHN beat the Rangers freshman team twice with no problem. Byron played a style of basketball similar to Northern with big guys that controlled the inside. While Northview was the complete opposite with shooters up and down their deep roster. One of the main issues for the freshman was their size, opposing teams took it to them and they had to resort to fouling. 

I think the biggest highlight of the year came against rival Lowell. Lowell had presented a challenge for many teams before the Rangers went into Red Arrow Country and controlled their stifling offense. The size was an advantage for the Arrows but playing one of the best games of their season this was not a problem. Freshman Matthew Murdock and Will McClain played one of the best games of their young career with hustle plays up and down the court. 

Despite the disappointing record, the future looks bright for the young team. Freshman Naveen Ram, Matthew Murdock, and Jackson Madigan look to become huge pieces next year on JV or varsity. With a little more hard work and confidence this young team and young players will become superstars at the next level.