SHS boys basketball prepare for upcoming season

PERIMETER DEFENSE STRATEGY – Sunnyside High School Varsity Boys Basketball Head Coach Bruce Siebol demonstrates to his players of how to defend and close out on the perimeter during Friday’s practice.

Photo by Patrick Shelby
PERIMETER DEFENSE STRATEGY – Sunnyside High School Varsity Boys Basketball Head Coach Bruce Siebol demonstrates to his players of how to defend and close out on the perimeter during Friday’s practice.



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DRIVING THE LANE – SHS Junior Airik Palacios fills the lane and scores on the layup against the Wapato A squad during the 2018 Sunnyside Boys Basket-all Jamboree on Tuesday night.

— “I feel real good about this team. They’re working hard in practice and all we have to do is go out there and show what we can do on the court,” Sunnyside High School Varsity Boys Basketball Head Coach Bruce Siebol said prior to the team practice on Friday.

Last year, the Grizzlies were a veteran team with an overall record of 19-4, which included an invitation to the state playoffs for the first time in 28 seasons.

Five seniors graduated from the program and three of them are playing college basketball.

“This team is real young. We’ve got a couple of seniors, a couple of juniors, four sophomores and two freshmen playing on varsity,” coach Siebol explained. “I’m real pleased how things have been going. We’re trying to get in shape and get ready.”

The coach acknowledged how he is counting on the team’s seniors to take a leadership role in mentoring the up and coming underclassmen.

“We had a couple of kids that were freshmen on our varsity last year that are coming back, and they know their roles,” Siebol stated.

Conditioning has been one of the most important areas for the Grizzlies in preparing for the beginning of the season.

“We’ve been working on a lot of fundamentals,” Siebol added. “If you can’t dribble, pass or shoot, it doesn’t matter what play we run.”

Along with getting in shape, the coach has been conveying his strong message of fundamentals with a solid voice of expectations he requires from his team.

“You’re going to see a team that’s high energy. We shoot the ball fairly well, and we’re going to be tough defensively like last year. I’m looking forward to watching them play myself.”

There are questions that the coaching staff have which can only be answered in a real game environment.

“It’s hard to tell. Until, you really get out there and see what happens during a game, especially when you have such a young group. They’ve been working hard in practice and doing things the right way,” Siebol said.

On Tuesday, the Grizzlies took their practice game to the competitive hardwood as they hosted a basketball jamboree featuring teams from Sunnyside Christian, Grandview and Mabton.

“These jamborees tell us a lot about kids playing in front of a crowd and I’m excited for it,” Siebol exclaimed.

The opportunity for coaches to evaluate the team’s execution on everything they have been working on is the real focus of the exhibition and not the scoreboard. Coach Siebol pointed out that he is most concerned about what his team is doing right and how they can get better.

“We’re really young, and if we show some perseverance while working hard through our struggles, that will show me something,” Siebol said. “I know we got some talent. With young kids you want to see them react under adversity. And, that’s what I want to see tonight.”

At 7:30 p.m. tonight, the varsity boys basketball team will tip off their basketball season with a home opening game against Walla Walla.



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