So, the last time you heard from me not too much had happened. The last few weeks have just been practice, practice, and more practice. We have had two scrimmages this past week. Practice has been cool. Our team is deep, so it’s always really competitive and the majority of the practice is live stuff. We’re always getting up and down the floor trying to put ourselves in game situations –
There’s never a boring moment.
Our first scrimmage was against Dartmouth. Although we won by three, we felt like it was a team we should beat by a lot more. Our team performance was solid but there was plenty of room for improvement. Personally, I didn’t show up for the game. I came off the bench as 6th man and contributed just two points. I found it hard to get into the game, but I’m putting that one down to nerves. I was also a little mad about coming off-the-bench but that might be my role this year and I will have to learn to adapt to it – for a while, at least.
The second scrimmage wasn’t as competitive. We played a D3 team from Boston and won comfortably. As it was a scrimmage we were running everyone in and out every few minutes: I didn’t see that much action. I came off-the-bench again and was a little bit better than the first scrimmage, contributing 11 points with a nice little dunk on the break. I’m happy I’m making progress. After not playing a real game for 2 years, the transition of playing team basketball again is the biggest obstacle at the moment. I think it’ll take a few games to get my mind sharp again, to compete at game standard. However, I’m still very excited for the season.
We open up next Friday at home against another top D2 team. It will be a good game. More importantly than all that though is how dominant my fantasy NBA team is looking. I’m only a few days off my first victory against my old Belfast Star and St Malachy’s teammate, Matthew ‘’Superstar’’ Jackson. I cant’t wait to collect my winnings next summer!
You will hear from me again soon. I hope all is good back home.
Paul was the first player featured on The Courtside Collective; he is currently one of only two players from N.I. playing college basketball in the USA. Paul attends Franklin Pierce, a Division 2 school in New England, and is on a full scholarship. He spent last year as a ‘red-shirt’, missing out on an entire season due to a serious foot injury. This year he is back in action and the sky is the limit for the former St Malachy’s College baller. We are happy to have Paul onboard as a regular contributor.