Your Annual Winter Sports Preview


Picture of the Track Field with Snow, Picture taken by Lacey Sheaffer

Enkhmaa Bilegee, Staff Writer

The winter sports season is here! With the days becoming shorter and the weather getting colder, this year’s winter sports teams have yet to show off their growing effort.  

The State High Boy’s Basketball Team has been working hard during the off-season to build a great team with a stable foundation. “As a team perspective, we always just want to try to become the best team that we can be–whatever that looks like,” says Brian Scholly, head coach of the Varsity Boy’s Basketball. “We’re always just looking to see how we can improve.”

Off-season, the team has been practicing hard, hosting team camps, and playing scrimmages. Compared to the young team from last year, the boys’ basketball team has grown  a lot more experience. “We have a lot of guys coming back that have played a lot,” Scholly states, “We have a lot of institutional knowledge that guys have and what we need to do to be successful. So I’m excited for those guys to use their experience and, hopefully, turn it into success on and off the court.”

Coach Alli Mock of the Girls’ Varsity Basketball team is just as enthusiastic for the season to start. Coach Mock says, “The group that we have this year has a lot of talent and they are a great group to work with. I think they are going to be able to accomplish a lot this season.” 

From open gyms at 6 A.M. to a summer league in Hollidaysburg, the team has been diligently practicing every week. The girls’ basketball has been looking to find the things they want to accomplish as a team.On the basketball side of things, we want to increase our communication on the court and our defense as a whole,” Mock states. “ But as a team, we want to become more cohesive and really start to understand our strengths as individual players and how we can use those out on the court playing together.”.

Along with the basketball teams, the Swim Team is working hard to accomplish their goal for the season which is to win a Mid-Penn Conference Championship, a District Championship, and a State Championship. The team hopes to continue their undefeated streak from last season. “We have a very experienced group of returning divers, which I believe will help us in having a State Qualifier in Diving for the first time in many years!” Aaron Workman, head coach of the swim team, says.

“This year we also have a plan in place to be more specialized with our Distance group, Mid-distance, and diving and sprint groups to allow them to focus on their specific races more during the week,” Workman continues. Focusing on the overall strength of athletes, the swim team’s training schedule is built up in a way that allows more effectiveness in the weight room with the additional dry-land workouts during the week. 

We are excited to grow as a team, and with a more normal schedule, it is going to allow us to have more fun with team bonding activities and be successful in and out of the water!” exclaims Workman.

With their eyes on the State Championships, Indoor Track & Field team hopes to build a cohesive team that works well together. This year, the girls’ and the boys’ teams have gathered under one coaching umbrella. “We’ll be moving forward with a greater sense of unity than ever before,” says Coach Artie Gilkes, head coach of the Indoor Track & Field team. “Our coaching staff is really set up to work together with greater collaboration than ever before. Our girls’ team is a more veteran team than it has been in the past. While our boys’ team is one of unencumbered personalities,” 

Speaking of personalities, this year’s Track & Field team is definitely a big one. “ When you can get those types of personalities to continue to develop individually but they also bring their personality to work with other personalities towards a shared experience of a common goal,” Gilkes says, “well anything can happen.”

But as the other teams focus on repeated practice, the Wrestling Team’s main focus is staying healthy and well-rested. “Wrestling is a demanding sport and can take a toll on the body,” says Coach Ryan Cummins, head coach of the Wrestling Team. “I predict that if we stay healthy, we will have a chance to win many matches as a team.”

As a team with a core group of members that can compete at high levels, the Wrestling Team is well-balanced and always ready to perform their very best. “We also have many that play other sports and stay in shape all year. This helps us to hit the ground running when the season starts,” says Cummins

As the season progresses, the members continue to hone their skills. And with continuous practice and good health, this year’s teams are sure to give each new challenge their absolute all.