By Ian Jackson
The Roosevelt men’s Basketball team is looking to make strong statement this year coming off of a 12-16 record overall and 8-12 record in the Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference. Joe Griffin is heading into his seventh year as head coach for this Laker team and Aaron Rolle is heading to his sixth year as the assistant head coach for the Lakers. Griffin pitches in on what his team’s expectations are for this season.
“Our expectation for this season is to contend for a birth for the national tournament and to improve in all aspects of our program. Our Achilles heel last year was that we were a mediocre rebounding team, and we have to be a great rebounding team in order to maximize our true potential as a program” Griffin said. All eyes will be on seniors Damian Zalewski, Korey Ryan and Jason Markus as they lead the Lakers offense heading into this upcoming season.
Jason Markus, one of the captains of the team and a 21-year old Hospitality and Tourism Management major talks about what did he work on in the off-season personally and what he needs to improve on as the season progress, “In the off-season, I worked endlessly on my shot. I’m a perfectionist so I really put a lot of time and effort in my shot. Also, I worked on my ball handling skills as well as my strength” Markus said. A lot of Marcus’ teammates will be acknowledging him as their leader this season, so he has been working a lot on improving his leadership role as captain, he said.
“Our goal this season is to reach the national tournament which we have never done before. We have the leadership, talent, and commitment so if we stay the course, it can be a special season” Markus said.
Their 2016 season opener is at home against East-West University on November 2nd at the Goodman Center at 7:00pm. The last time they faced East-West University was February 11th 2011 at their place where they walked away with a loss 77-86. Mark Tometich led the Lakers with 25 points and six rebounds while his brother Paul recorded a double-double with 24 points and 10 rebounds. But that was in the past. A new start to a new season and this year’s team is ready to cause waves and do some major damage this season.