Off season competition

Kyla Johnson, Sports Writer

The official high school basketball season is over. However, for a certain group of Saints, their basketball season is just beginning. Intramural Basketball Association, also known as IBA, is a popular after school activity at Xavier High School. Boys from all grades can participate, some being multisport athletes and others participating just for fun. Players on the Xavier Boys Basketball Team cannot actually compete by playing but can still be involved as coaches. This year, there are five total teams competing, each with an NBA team name. Each team is made of a coach, captain and eight players. Teams practice and compete outside of school hours. Each IBA team will play four regular season games. Based on the results of these games, the seeding for the playoffs will be chosen. The tournament consists of three rounds and will conclude with the championship game. IBA is led by Xavier teacher and Girls Basketball coach Tom Lilly. He has been refereeing for IBA since the program was started by Lilly and former Xavier Athletic Director Mike Winker. “They benefit by trying to relive their glory days of junior high basketball, freshman and sophomore years for those who excel to the highest level in IBA. Along with bragging rights for who beats who is also important. That is what guys do. There is a sense of camaraderie amongst the teams that along with good sportsmanship is most important to walk away with,” Lilly said. Coach of the Hawks, Brody Hoffmann (X23), played high school basketball this season. Hoffmann wants the best for his team and does what he can to lead them to the most success. “My goal is to win the whole thing but also to make sure everyowwne has fun and scores. We show up before the game locked in and talk before we go out and play,” Hoffmann said. Alongside Hoffmann is his captain, senior Alex Neal. As a captain, Neal has more of a leadership role on the court during the game. Neal said Hoffmann is a very important part of his team as he comes with a game plan every time and watches film to be a great head coach. “I’ve just tried to create a fun and winning environment for my guys. Our goals include winning the championship and going undefeated,” Neal said Competing against Hoffmann and Neal is Declan Coe (X22), a player for the Heat. They are led by their coach Spencer Mesch and captain Drew Proskovec. Coe is excited to show the level of competition his team has to bring. Coe said that Proskovec has been a cornerstone player for their team as a great player and leader. “My goals are to silence the haters, the ones who say I’m not an offensive threat, the ones who put me as a questionable second round pick,” Coe said. The first two regular season games were played on Friday April 8. Final regular season games will be played on Wednesday, April 20 and playoffs will begin on the 23. Once the quarterfinal games are played, teams will begin to become eliminated until only one team remains as the champions.