Basketball Teams Ready For Winter Season



Coming off of a tough home playoff loss to Blue Valley Northwest last season, the Shawnee Mission West boys’ basketball team is looking to take advantage of depth and young talent this season, and is hoping to shock some teams in the Sunflower League.

“In years past it has been a struggle to field a full team with varsity level players, but this year I can safely say that there are about 12 players with varsity level talent and athleticism,” head boys’ basketball coach Mike Brinsko said.“We’ve been ranked in the 10th spot out of 12 teams in the league this preseason, but I see us easily competing with every team with the league.”

The boys’ basketball team benefitted this off-season from a new conditioning program, headed by Hunter Henry, both a collegiate player, playing basketball at Northwest Missouri State, and a professional player, having spent a year playing professional basketball in Germany.

“Coach Henry brought some of the workouts to West, and it really helped us out this off-season,” says senior forward Nick Thayer.
“At the beginning of the new program it was clear that the players were not in favor, but, over time, it has become evident that we are getting bigger and stronger,” Brinsko said.

Team chemistry is high and the team has a lot of confidence going into the season.

“I feel like this year we can make it to state due to the players we have coming back that had varsity playing time last year,” Thayer said.



Many could argue that the girls’ basketball team could be caught in the middle of a rebuilding year this season, but that is certainly not the feel coming from the team.

“It will be very different this year because of so many starters being gone, but this year’s team has a lot of experience playing together, and will still look to be successful playing up-tempo and scoring out of transition,” senior guard Jordan Gregory said.

The girls’ team also benefitted heavily over the off-season, thanks to a new conditioning program, run by the company T-Fit.

“Our fitness levels have increased a lot this off-season due to new full body exercises, and untraditional lifts and conditioning methods,” Gregory said. “Now, instead of just working specific parts of our bodies, we are improving our strength and endurance as a whole.”

Even with a completely new roster and team atmosphere this season, head girls’ basketball coach Scott Aldrich has complete confidence in his players.

“We are fortunate enough to have a good mixture of senior leadership and youth. We need everyone to step up and take a strong role if we plan on reaching our goals,” Aldrich said. “Success will be and always will be determined by the effort we put into each practice and game. I have high expectations for the season, and the goals of a Sunflower League title, Sub-State Title, and even State Title are within our reach.”