Men's Basketball Reflects on First Season, Looks Toward Next Year
The Celt’s Men’s Basketball team held their own on the hardwood after a 25 year hiatus. The team finished 10-15 with a strong season ending performance over Arlington Baptist College, to the tune of 83-45. From the first game and win against Wiley College (66-63), October 31, to their final victory, Coach Todd Smith and his team acknowledge their accomplishments and look toward the year ahead brimming with confidence and
“My goal this season was to build a sound foundation with quality student athletes, that could lead the way for future athletes in the sport and in the classroom,” Smith said. “We were all rookies this season, myself included. We learned valuable lessons and grew with every game throughout the season.”
Every member of the team brought their will to win, skill and their athletic ability to the home court and road games, etching their contributions on the score board. Smith said. This dedication yielded victories in seven of their last eight games and five consecutive wins.
Guards Melvin Roberts and Travis Lampley started the season off with a collaborative 35 points to add to the team’s first win. The end of the season saw Roberts and Lampley average for 12.3 and 11.9 points per game, respectively, with sizeable contributions from Tristian Grounds, Kosi Nwosu, Jeremy Lewis and Bryan Kaase. Lampley led the team in rebounds with a season average 5.2 rebounds, followed by Anthony Medina
with 4.2 and Kwosi Nwosu with 2.2. Lampley also led with a season average of 5.1 assists followed by Medina’s 2.2.
“Our victories against Paul Quinn and Southwestern Assemblies of God University on our Homecoming weekend were two of the most important games for us, and we learned valuable lessons and grew with every game throughout the season,” Smith said.
The Celts experienced injuries that left them unable to stand at 100 percent throughout the season.
“Everyone deals with injuries in their own way.” Smith said. “We were no exception to the rule. I believe we made the best choices as a team to allow players’ injuries to heal and give everyone a shot at contributing to the team chemistry throughout the season.”
The Celts have created a buzz with the alumni as well as on campus, resulting in the founding of an informal club, to support the basketball team called, the Celt Crazies.
With the rookie-season now behind them the team is eager to surpass the season’s accomplishments and establish themselves as a strong team.
“I think that we were all rookies this season, myself included,” Smith said. “Knowing what we know now I think we will set a realistic goal of finishing .500 next year or better. I think that’s a great bar to set for myself and the team.”