Varsity Basketball Learns from the Best


Varsity Basketball 2013 with special guest Dick Vitale!

As we move deeper into the fall, the winter sports are starting. The ODA varsity basketball season has just begun.

This year the basketball team has a whole new coaching staff and a unique line-up. The varsity team has a new head coach Marcus Liberty, a former NBA star.  Coach Liberty played collegiately at the University of Illinois, and was part of the NCAA final 4 in 1989. The  6′ 8″ former basketball “phenom”  is known for playing with professional teams such as the Denver Nuggets, and the Detroit Pistons from 1990-1994.

To kick off the 2013 season, famous sports announcer Dick Vitale and ODA grandparent, made an appearance at practice to congratulate the team and its new leader, a definite perk for the team.

The team is led by team captains junior, Nick Grano and senior, Charles Taylor. The two lone upperclassmen rely on the majority of the sophomores and a pair of particularly skilled freshmen, Amad Brayboy and Chase Maasdorp.

The Thunder (0-1) played Monday night at Northside Christian, where they lost by a score of 81-56.  Amad Brayboy, led the Thunder other night with 29 points.

All though the team had consumed their first loss of the season, “we played well for our first time being together,” freshmen Andrew Berg said. “We are a very young team who have never played together before. We have a lot of great potential, we just need to execute plays the same way we do in practice.”

In the past, the basketball team has had rather large players, with the majority of them being upperclassmen.  Now, a couple years later those older guys have graduated, and the team must build a foundation to get back to where they were.

“We are a small school, with small players, but we have a lot of great potential on this team.” Junior captain, Nick Grano said, “We play with heart, which makes our young guys stand out, we just need to grow as a team, and get a little smarter on the court and we should impress a lot of people this season.”

The Thunder has their second game of the season tonight (Nov. 20) at St. Pete Canterbury School, at 7PM.  We wish them luck!

Go Thunder!