3 December 2018
UPDATE: December 17th; The Atholton Raiders Boys Varsity basketball team has started off the season hot with a 3-0 record, earning quality wins over Centennial (December 7th), Howard (December 12th), and rival Reservoir (December 14th). Atholton started off the season beating Centennial by 18 and Senior guard Casey Parkins scored a team and game high 26 points. They then beat Howard by 32 points in their home opener, and then took down rival Reservoir on their (Reservoir’s) home court in a sold-out game. The game was back and forth for all four quarters, with Senior guard Maxwell Murray hitting the game winning jumper with 3.7 seconds left to seal the win for the Raiders in a hostile crowd. The Raiders hope to continue their standout play when they play at Mount Hebron today at 5:30, then Glen Burnie at home on Wednesday at 5:30 as well.
After winning their first two scrimmages by a combined 87 points against Glen Burnie and Fairmont Heights, Atholton Coach Jared Albert and his varsity players have their sights set on states going into the 2018-19 season.
The team has mostly the same team from last year, with 10 returning players (two Juniors and eight seniors), along with three new student transfers in forward Jordan Oates (via Glenelg Country School), forward Albert (AJ) Jackson (via Mount Saint Joseph), and forward Tyrique Gaither (via Woodlawn). They also have two new junior guards in Raymond (RJ) Brown and Cedric Briken, both of whom look to make a strong impact on the team in the coming season. Atholton only lost five seniors this year and is returning all their leading scorers and rebounders from last year. Coach Albert said that he feels their senior leadership will be their biggest strengths this year since they started five juniors last year, all of whom are returning.
Albert continued to say that he was really excited to see how all the new players will work with all the returning players. Senior forward Justin Oates, added to that by saying he was excited to work on “getting better as a team and rebounding and moving the ball.”
An improvement that the team is trying to make, is making sure everyone is getting involved. “Last year we had a bunch of people who didn’t seem involved in the program because they weren’t playing a lot,” said Senior guard/forward Javon Daniel. Daniel added that it would be great if everyone would get hyped up for the games even if they aren’t playing a lot.
Coach Albert commented that a new change this year would be that the team would be moving away from a man to man defensive scheme and be moving to a zone defence. He added that this was because they have limited time to practice and felt in past years they “were spending a lot of time on man to man defence and were neglecting some of the stuff offensively and some special game situations.” Justin Oates added that “getting better on defence,” was a main priority for the team this year.
Javon Daniel stated that the team’s goals for this season were to win county’s, regionals, and get to states. He added that the team plans to accomplish these goals by emphasizing “communication, teamwork, and making sure everyone is on the same page of what we have to do…we can accomplish that [those goals].” Coach Albert finished off that statement by saying, “I think we have the talent to do it [win states].”
They play at Centennial to start the season on December 7th at 7:00 pm
Coach: Jared Albert
G Donald Robinson (Senior)
G Phillip Mitchell (Senior)
G/F Baiyee-ndang Agbor-baiyee (Senior)
G Connor Marshall (Senior)
G Maxwell Murray (Senior)
G Casey Parkins (Senior)
G/F Justin Oates (Senior)
G/F Javon Daniel (Senior)
F Jabari Rankin (Junior)
F Darren Miller (Junior)
New Transfers/Up and coming Juniors:
G Cedric Briken (Junior)
G Raymond Brown (Junior)
F Jordan Oates (Junior)
F Albert Jackson (Senior)
F Tyrique Gaither (Senior)
photo courtesy of @AtholtonBball