The Huntington High School boys’ basketball program is eyeing the upcoming season with excitement and hope. Varsity head coach Brian Carey recently held an interest meeting and dozens of potential players turned out after school.
Carey distributed materials that detail the criteria for selection to the junior varsity and varsity teams, including skill level, physicality, program continuity, “coach-ability,” work ethic, attitude and academic commitment.
Carey also outlined the program’s philosophy, emphasizing the following points:
- Establish goals that are demanding of our individual and collective work ethic.
- Know your priorities: Family, social responsibility, academics and then athletic competition.
- Value the game, the teaching and the lessons of competition and teamwork.
- Trust is the foundation and builder of great team chemistry.
- Trust is hard to find and easy to lose.
- Think clearly: Thoughts become words, words become actions, actions become habits, habits become character and your character becomes your destiny.
- You play the way you practice Execute what is practiced. Allow yourself to be coached. Practice tough.
- On a daily basis work hard to improve on what we do both individually and collectively. Every day is a day to get better.
- Mistakes happen. What happens after the mistake is how we are measured and defines who we are in all aspects of our lives.
- Always remember we represent our families, our school, our community and our teammates, both on and off the court.
- We are all about us. One our team each of you is part of us. Think us first. Live success.
Tryouts for the Blue Devil JV and varsity teams will be held over a three day period stretching from Tuesday, November 13 to Thursday, November 15. The first practices for both teams are set for Friday, November 16.
Last year’s 13-player squad compiled a 6-8 record in league play and went 7-13 overall. Huntington was hampered during much of the season by having to go without the services of key starting guard Nat Amato, who was injured early in the year. The teenager returned for the final two games on the schedule and the Blue Devils won both.
Huntington lost several close games, including contests to Kings Park (57-53), Northport (43-41), Newfield (48-43) and Copiague (61-59). If the Blue Devils had won one more league game they would have qualified for post-season play.
Seniors Michael Abbondandelo, Nat Amato, Gerard Federici, Ryan Gorecki, Mekhi Harvey, Nick Inman and Brendan Simpson and team manager Tyler Gerbavsits all graduated last June. Underclassman Freddie Amato relocated with his family to Florida. Jonah Anastos, Ian Ardell, Matthew Girimonti, Chad Rowe and John Tucker are all eligible to return to the court this winter. Many players from the JV team that went 10-4 in league play are also expected to get the call up to the varsity.
With the junior varsity team coming off its most successful season in seven years, Carey is looking forward to assembling a 2018/19 roster comprised of five returning varsity players and the JV’s best.