Their schedule includes a trip to Buffalo to play the reigning New York State public schools AA champ Aquinas Institute of Rochester, in addition to the regular CHSAA slate. But Jamison thinks his group is ready to roll.
“Our schedule is kind of crazy this year,” he said. “But the kids will be up to it, I think we’ll be OK.”
The Kingsmen are an athletic, energetic bunch, who pride themselves on playing smothering defense. That much was evident from seeing the hard-charging practice early this past Sunday morning, when the team received its new gear.
“We are a man-to-man, trapping team,” said Jamison. “For the most part, when we won our two state titles back in 2012 and 2013, we were a 1-2-2 team all over the floor. Three-quarter court, half-court. We didn’t have the length to play it the last couple years so we went back to man-to-man.”
The athleticism and stamina come from a lot of repetition, and a lot of fighting through exhaustion.
“We do a lot of collegiate drills,” said Jamison, a retired New York City police officer. “A lot of agility, basketball related stuff to get the guys in shape.”
Offensively, they are undertaking a lot for a high school team but when it gels, watch out.
“We are a transition team,” said Jamison. “we get up and down. We run some motion. This year we’re running some elements of the Princeton offense. That’s a little bit of a challenge. If we can shoot the ball halfway decent, we’re going to cause a lot of problems.”
They are an experienced team made up of many juniors and four seniors, all of whom made it to the city semifinals last season after a 1-6 start. That togetherness should help propel them to more success this season.
“We have a lot of quickness,” said the coach who has been at the helm of this team since 1996. “If we can get the cohesiveness together, if we get the kids believe in each other and play for one another, I think we’ll be fine.”
The journey starts today and the entire POINT 3 Basketball family will be watching and rooting on the Nazareth Kingsmen in their quest to bring home a championship!