‘Never quit’ attitude takes team far
By Erin Gallagher Correspondent March 23, 2013 4:10AM
The New Lenox Liberty Junior High eighth-grade boys basketball team | Erin Gallagher~For Sun-Times Media
Updated: April 25, 2013 7:19AM
It was their “never quit attitude” that earned the New Lenox Liberty Junior High eighth-grade boys basketball team fourth place at state, Coach Ryan Mandella told the District 122 School Board Wednesday.
“Not only is the team amazing, but coach Ryan Mandella was named the Illinois Basketball Association’s Coach of the Year for the second year in a row,” media coordinator Jenny Zimmerman said.
The team’s record was 24-4. It took firsts at the Joliet City of Champions Tournament and the Lincoln-Way West’s Summer League. The team was the school’s first in history to earn the regional or sectional championships.
“Our losses downstate were to Jane Addams who finished in third place, and St. Louis Lincoln, who won the state title,” Mandella said. “I have never seen a team come together for each other and work harder to achieve a goal than I did with this team.”
Mandella thanked the players, his fellow staff and parents for their contributions.
The team members include Jay Bumstead, Connor Lowman, Cal Porhte, Marco Pettinato, Trey Telez, Michael Majcher, Max Rosenfeld, Brett Dawson, Evan Mitchell, Nate Studnicka, A.J. Winters and Kody Waxweiler.