Men’s basketball has high hopes for success

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The Northern Vermont University-Johnson men’s basketball team has a new look for the 2018-2019 season. The Badgers have 11 new faces on this year’s roster with seven returning players.

The Badgers have put the time in this pre-season and the new players have acclimated well to the transition to Northern Vermont University-Johnson.

Co-captain Donell Shaw has seen a strong commitment and work ethic from the new players.

“I believe the freshman and transfers have done a great job adjusting to a new atmosphere and have consistently worked hard at being student-athletes at NVU,” he said.

Shaw believes that the consistent work ethic has brought the team closer these past few months and hopes it will correlate on the basketball court.

“We are building a strong relationship with one another and it is forming a brotherhood which allows everyone to feel comfortable,” he said.

Co-Captain Vernon Slater believes the new players have really embraced NVU-Johnson, not only for the athletics, but also for academics.

“Each player is here with a purpose of not only being an athlete, but they care about their academics as well,” he said.

Head Coach Miles Smith has high hopes for this group.

“We have strong leaders. Both Vernon Slater and Donell Shaw have done a great job of leading by example,” he said. “I wanted to make sure that my leaders have an opportunity to mentor our younger guys. They have shown me thus far that our culture will continue to grow”.

With the changes in the North Atlantic Conference, Coach Smith believes some of his most exciting games out of conference will be former conference opponents.

“I can’t wait to play New England College,” said Smith. “If it was up to me, I would play there every year. It is a great atmosphere and I have the up most respect for what Coach Charlie Mason has done there.”

The Badgers will also play at Middlebury College on Tues., Nov. 20.

The ultimate goal for the Badgers is to win the North Atlantic Conference but they want every member of their team to focus on the process and work hard every day.

“The goal for this season is to make sure the younger guys enjoy the experience,” Shaw said. “Learning and cherishing every moment will allow each member of this team to get through the adversity that occurs. Every team wants to win the championship but if we don’t cherish the time we’ve put in and care about the moment we will never make it that far.”

The Badgers will open up the regular season against College of St. Joseph’s. The game will be played at Northern Vermont University-Lyndon on Thurs., Nov. 8.


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