Windham Eagle: WHS savors resurgence in varsity basketball this season

By Matt Pascarella

WHS Varsity Boys

Windham High School’s varsity boys’ basketball closed the regular season with a record of 16-2 and are the top-ranked team in AA North. They face off against fourth-ranked Lewiston Thursday, Feb. 22 at Cross Insurance Arena in Portland.

The WHS boys’ team is coached by Chad Pulkkinen and is assisted by George McCrillis, junior varsity coach Geoff Grigsby and first team coach Noah Estey.

The varsity team includes freshmen Colin Janvrin and Allegra Kawaya; sophomores Adrian “AJ” Moody and Tyrie James; juniors Joseph Blige, Conor Janvrin, Grant Coppi, Braycen Freese and Creighty Dickson and seniors Blake McPherson, Quinton Lindsay, Erik Bowen, Ryan Smyth, Noah Mains, Beni Ninziza, Matthew Searway, and Paolo Ventura.

“We’re feeling amazing,” said Moody. “Our strengths right now are how tight we are, not getting down so much on each other; some things we need to work on are our help side defense and once we figure that out, we’re locking in and fighting for our spot to get our names on that [championship] banner. All of us are so excited.”

Windham is progressing and guys are ready to go. Pulkkinen said he likes that his team was playing its best basketball by the end of the season. He still doesn’t think they’re there, which means there’s still room for growth. The players have done film study and self-reflection as a team on where they can improve. Their goal is always to be better the next day, at the next practice.

Pulkkinen said the team understands the playoffs are not going to be an easy road; it’s win or go home.

WHS strengths are court connection, ability to understand one another, players know what value they bring to their team, effort has always been top notch.

The team’s weaknesses are little defensive things and improving some of those small details, but being healthy allows for improvement.

The bye week as the top playoff seed gave Windham a chance to get healthy and focus on improvement in time for their first semifinal game.

“Feeling good, confident, said Lindsay. “Ball movement, unselfish [are strengths]; some weaknesses defensively help side and talking are the two major things.”

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