It will take time before the varsity basketball team at Brooklyn’s Bishop Ford High School gets it together. Inexperience on the varsity level is contributing on the negative side to the under .500 start.
Turnovers and missed shots from the field early in the game were two reasons for the setback against the host St. Francis Prep quintet. However, as the season progresses, the young Falcons are expected to improve, move on and make a run to be a contender in the Catholic High Schools Athletic Association race to the playoffs.
Remember, on roster of 13 players, there are four seniors, seven juniors and two very talented sophomores-Marc Jones and Damani Campbell, both starters had plenty of experience on the freshman team at Bishop Ford last year.
The latter two are putting in major minutes in an effort to put a winning team on the court. They are young and talented who have tremendous futures ahead of them.
“Jones is an excellent point guard,” noted Junior Varsity coach Sal Cacioppo about the varsity squad. “They have very good athleticism. But they both have a lot to learn on the varsity level.”
The Falcons opened up this season against Riverdale, a private school earlier on the schedule. They came out on the short end of the score. Then they lost to Bronx Science, another non-league rival, from the public schools’ system. However, they defeated Brooklyn’s Poly Prep, another private school, for their only victory of the season at press time. The Poly Prep contest was a huge victory for Ford.
The two sophomores going into their first varsity game felt a little nervous.
“I was a little nervous myself coaching my first game,” Cicioppo said.
Campbell did say that he played a better game against St. Francis Prep last Friday evening, than in some of his other ones.
“I cut down on mistakes and played harder (than in the other games),” said Campbell, a small forward or shooting guard. “Going into my first game I felt pressure as I was a little nervous.”
After Ford’s first six games of the young season, the Falcons overall struggled to play a complete team game and to put a full 32 minutes together as a team on the court.”
“(However,) we are playing well together in spurts,” Head Coach Denis Nolan said. “(Unfortunately) it’s not long enough or good enough at this point. But I do see growth. We have to learn from our mistakes; we have a lot of guys who are learning.”
After the St. Francis Prep contest, Ford’s Coach Nolan did see some positives ahead for themselves.
“We got the ball to Josh (junior forward Joshua Blagrave),” Nolan added. “We did a good job in getting the ball. We got him a lot of touches. He went to the foul line a lot.”
In the second half, the Falcon players played better ball than in the first half and tried in vain to make a comeback as the hosts from Queens were just a little too much for them.