Salem Boy’s Basketball Begins A Championship Run
Photos by Angelina Caggliano
When one visualizes the iconic American high school experience a few key images come to mind. Prom or homecoming, with beautifully dressed girls accompanying handsome dates, busy classrooms, with kids studying and chatting with friends, and perhaps a football team, with players who are the stars of the school, leading the team to victory and strutting through the school with well-deserved confidence.
Here at Salem High School we have the proms and the classrooms, but what makes our school notable is our varsity boys basketball team. Basketball culture is tangible here at Salem High, with “alums still [coming] to games and practices” says senior captain Jhonel Roberts.
These boys have had an undefeated season against other division two teams, and are confident that they have the ability to win the upcoming state championships.
The school has rallied around this winning team. A core group of junior and senior boys attend every home game and sit in the front row in matching fan gear—white shirts for the white out game, red “superfan” shirts, or their signature jerseys. This past Thursday students throughout the school purchased “superfan” shirts to present a united appearance in the stands against Chelsea in the first round of the playoffs.
Needless to say, Salem dominated the game and is moving on to the next round of the playoffs, with another home game on Monday. The game is against Wakefield and will begin at 7 P. M., though due to the large turnout spectators are advised to arrive early to find parking and desirable seats.
Though Salem High is extremely proud of our team, the whole community has come out to support these boys. Former captains, parents of students past and present, and a variety of other community members attend these riveting play off games. Though they are no longer affiliated with the school, their support is vital to the success of the team.
As the season progresses the pressure is building up for these talented players. Junior Danny Nguyen notes that the season is “very fun and serious at the same time”—an understandable sentiment considering how invested the boys and their peers and community are in these make-or-break games.
Senior captain Joel Nunez speaks fondly of his teammates, describing them as a “family of brothers.” The duty he feels as a captain is clear, as he describes “getting closer to teammates” and setting an “[example] to the underclassmen and even some of the upperclassmen” as some of the most important aspects of his season.
This magic that happens on the court seems to have developed partially due to the bond the boys share. It is this “great chemistry that [allows us] to succeed” affirms senior Cam Fraser.
As much as this team brings the school and the community together, these boys are the ones who deserve the bulk of the praise. When push comes to shove they are the ones darting up and down the court, and uniting to secure the win for the team. It is their teamwork and athleticism that steals the show, as remarkable as the support shown by the school and community is.