KISAC: Boys Pick Up Their First Win of The Season and Girls Bring Home Bronze

High School Varsity Basketball Flies to Jeju for Mid-season Tournament

DIS boys and girls’ varsity basketball competed against teams from all around the nation at the KISAC weekend tournament held in mid-February. A limited number of players could attend, which conflicted with the jam-packed boys roster. Only the top boys team traveled, but the smaller girls team squeezed in all players.

Round robin games were held on the first day of the tourney, determining places in each seed. The boys placed last in their respective bracket with results of 0-3. The girls, on the other hand, dominated Jeju with the results of 3 wins and no losses, placing 1st in their division. On the second day, the playoffs began.

Dylan signals Ethan, scheming a plan. Photo by Ryan Oh.

Two days of dedication provided both crews with unforgettable experiences. The girls finished 3rd, bringing home the bronze medal. They concluded the final day with 2 wins and 1 loss. Meanwhile, the boys finally earned their first “W” of the season against FPS (Fayston Preparatory School).

Dylan shoots the free throw to take the lead. Photo by Ryan Oh.

The boys had a rough start this season, a contrast from ending volleyball undefeated. Their confidence suffered after the SKAC divisionals a few weeks prior, where they ended the day at 0-3. The defeats, however, served as a springboard for improvement. The team gave it their all from that point on. Ethan said, “In SKAC, we lost all games by double digit points but in KISAC we really improved and we actually beat one team and lost to another by only two points. Also, winning that game was amazing because I know all the hard work me and our teammates put in, and that work eventually paid off and we got our first win of the season.”

Ethan takes an explosive step to pass the defender. Photo by Ryan Oh.

The future of the DIS boys basketball season is up in the air, but the win and other close games at KISAC bring a ray of hope. Mr. Kaschub said, “ I think the most important thing is the improvement that we make as a team. We have had very little time to practice over the last couple years, pretty much no time to practice. Maybe the results are not what we wanted but the growth we showed as a team was awesome. We went from the divisionals to the first day of KISAC, getting beat pretty badly, to the last day of KISAC, playing way way better and barely losing to a couple really good teams and beating a team as well.”

The boys come together at the end of the game to plan how to finish strong. Photo by Ryan Oh.

Ethan remains optimistic, “Although we didn’t get a lot of wins, I think our team developed extremely well and I think the coach was also proud of how much we developed through the experience.”

Caden floats above the defenders to make the shot. Photo by Ryan Oh.

Along with the boys, the girls continued an upward trajectory. Mr. Park said, “Results-wise I was pretty happy. I was very proud of all the players. The girls couldn’t believe it because they thought that they would lose all of their games, because they never thought that we were a strong team at the tournament. But now they realize that they can be really good if we work together as a team.”

Lily prepares to shoot a free throw. Photo by Ryan Oh.

Cooperation wins games, but an unexpected individual boosted the girls. Freshman Minori put up threes like Steph Curry, landing surprise shots from behind the arc.

Minori said, “I didn’t think I would be able to shoot that well because I wasn’t really a good shooter over the past few years, but then, after Mr. Park taught me how to shoot properly, it worked.” Her performance stood out, scoring many of the team’s points. 

The girls show off their bronze. Photo by Ryan Oh.

The girls took pride in their determination throughout the weekend. Senior Sarah said, “The girls team did really well. I’m super proud of them. I hope they do well in the next season when I’m not here.”

Apple dribbles down the court to set up a play against ISB. Photo by Ryan Oh.

A few bumps in the road accompanied the overall successful journey to Jeju. Some players suffered abuse from the rough, competitive play. Ethan said, “Those injuries really gave us a hard time. One of our best players, Juan, was not able to play the second day and Harry also had his ankles hurt.”

Minori said, “BHA were really aggressive. They fouled a lot and we were really angry. Mr. Park was also angry and frustrated. And then Lisa got hurt and Lisa is one of our best players. We were kind of worried because we weren’t sure how far we could go without Lisa because she was our point guard.” But the girls prevailed without their star.

The girls greets the opponent team with great sportsmanship. Photo by Ryan Oh.

At the end of the second day, the squads came together for the award ceremony to receive trophies and medals. The KISAC organization awarded outstanding players medals called the “All-Tournament Team Medal”. To their surprise, two Jets earned awards, Ethan and Sarah. 

Mr. Park said, “Sarah played very hard. She played hard defense. She got all the rebounds for us, and when it was a 50/50 chance for balls, she hustled to get those balls for us. She got a lot of fouls from the other teams too because she was being physical and aggressive. So she was definitely our strongest player, which is why I gave her the All-Tournament Team Medal.”

The girls make some noise to show their school spirit. Photo by Ryan Oh.

Mr. Kaschub said, “I think Ethan excelled on both ends of the court, both offense and defense. But he usually guarded the best player on the other team. He did an awesome job of staying in front of the best player on each of the teams we played against and communicating. Overall he played really really well on defense. Offensively, he did really well as well. He scored quite a few points for us and he always brought consistent energy.” 

The KISAC tournament provided a chance to improve for the upcoming big slam: the Jets will meet for the SKAC finals in mid-March. Although the trip contained ups and downs, overall people left the island satisfied. Ethan looks forward to finals, “I can’t wait to kiss the SKAC trophy.”