Prep Basketball

Xavier seniors have big basketball dreams

HS journalism: Losing in substate semifinals left 'sour taste' last season

Xavier's Tre McCrary, pushing past West's Nicholas Pepin during a game earlier this month, is one of the Saints' seniors
Xavier’s Tre McCrary, pushing past West’s Nicholas Pepin during a game earlier this month, is one of the Saints’ seniors trying to get the team back to state this year. (Rebecca F. Miller/The Gazette)

CEDAR RAPIDS — Losing early in the postseason is no way to end a season.

The Cedar Rapids Xavier boys’ basketball team made it to the substate semifinals last season. This year’s team is motivated and hungry for more, especially the senior class.

“Losing so early last season left a sour taste in our mouth so I think everyone is excited to prove to everyone that we can be a contender this year,” senior Tre McCrary said.

The seniors are leading that charge.

“For the seniors, it is our last season. It was a bad feeling not making it to state last season,” senior Jake Beckmann said. “We want to make this last season count.”

This is Coach Mike Freeman’s first year on the job and the team is excited to see where he will take them.

“I think Coach Freeman is really going to help us improve this year,” senior Davis Wagner said.

An important element to the boys’ basketball program this year is chemistry.

“A goal for me this season is to build good team chemistry, which Coach Freeman is emphasizing this year,” Wagner said. “It is up to the seniors to make sure that happens.”

With a team chemistry mind-set, the Saints have set big goals.

“Everyone within our program knows that we could make a big impact come postseason time,” McCrary said. “Our main goal this year is to make it to state and compete for a championship.”

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Along with their goals, the Saints are excited to make memories with their teammates and have fun throughout the season.

“I’m really excited to have fun this season and create a lot of memories with my teammates,” Beckmann said. “I’m also really excited to celebrate wins with my team.”

The Saints are 2-5 and have lost five in a row. They play at Iowa City Liberty on Friday.

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