Winter sports teams making adjustments


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Lady Eagles forward Kiera Bush dribbles past a Lakeside defender during a home game on Dec. 7, 2016. The 2017-18 season will be the senior’s second season with Cleveland.

Ruth Mulugeta, Staff Reporter

The Eagles are dusting off their uniforms as they prepare for the upcoming winter sports season. Here’s a preview of what’s to come:

After failing to go far in postseason last year, the boys basketball team is anxious for the start of the season. The last time the Eagles made it to the state tournament was 2016, where the team finished in 6th place. The boys hope to make another appearance this year. According to point guard Charles “C.J.” Elleby, the team has been working on building a relationship on the court.

“I think we’ve just gotten closer,” Elleby said. “Last year our chemistry was off, but I think [with] the seniors leaving and the guys … we’ve been around each other for a minute now, so we’re kind of meshed together and are used to each other.”

As the Eagles prepare for the season, which officially kicks off with an away game on Dec. 1, they’re looking to beat two specific teams: Garfield and Rainier Beach. There has always been a rivalry between the teams, but for Cleveland’s seniors, beating them is personal.
“They’ve beat us every single year, and I really want to get them back,” Elleby said. “My sophomore year, Garfield beat us four times, so yeah … revenge.”

The Eagles will play in a Jamboree at Rainier Beach High School on Saturday, Nov. 25 at 4 p.m. Teams include Beach, Franklin, Renton and Lindbergh high schools. The Eagles will play at Garfield on Dec. 1, at 8:30 p.m.

The Lady Eagles have been putting in work by holding late games in the gym against French teams. After losing two solid seniors last year, the team is looking to fill their shoes.
“Ryan Terry and Gigi Flowers had a huge impact on our team,” said Kiera Bush, a senior. “They brought a lot to the table, but I also feel like they prepared the upcoming seniors to take their place. I feel like we can be their replacements.”

As the girls focus on returning the Lady Eagles to their state champion status, look for their rivalry with Rainier Beach to get more serious. But the teams will have to wait to go to battle; they don’t meet until February in the last regular season game of the season. Bush said she is excited for the match up because that game will double as Senior Night for the Lady Eagles.

“Honestly, I look forward to playing all of the games and all of the different teams because it’s an opportunity to improve and be seen by different groups of people,” Bush said.

The Lady Eagles will open their season with an away game against Garfield on Dec. 1, at 7 p.m.

The boys swim team made a splash last season when they gained multiple club swimmers who were huge assets to the team. The team even broke a record – twice – in the 200 medley relay. Sophomore Anthony Bui is seen as one of the team’s standout swimmers.

“Last year, we got a lot of freshmen who are club people like me and Andrew [Hong],” Bui said.
The team hopes to keep the streak alive with another group of relatively young boys. This season, it’s all about focus so they can keep breaking records in hopes of qualifying for district, as well as state.

“I’m looking forward to some of us making it to state, and for me to make it to districts for both of my events: the 100 butterfly and 100 backstroke,” Bui said.

The team has their first meet on Friday, Dec. 1, against Seattle Prep.

Walk into the weight room and you see the wrestling team engaged in grueling work outs. Pass by the lunchroom after school and you’ll see them practicing new techniques – all in preparation for the season ahead. The team has been focusing on building their own strength as well as the team’s.

“Knowing last years record, I now know that we have to be better and put in way more work so that we can get to where we want to be,” said Aram Gould, a junior.

Every wrestlers goal is to have a positive record or be undefeated, but post-season action is always the end goal. In order to get there, the team is going to have to learn to work together.
The wrestlers will head to Garfield for their first match on Nov. 30.

Staff reporter Devonte Reddick contributed to this story.