The boys basketball team is gearing up for this season with veteran head coach, Peter Diepenbrock, who returned to the team after seven years. The team has had an influx of players who joined the team this year.
“It’ll be hard to continue with a big group of new players,” junior Jack Simison said. “So we need to focus on getting them ready to play as a team with the players that are already on the team.”
Diepenbrock has taken strides to cultivate the team in a new way. He has coached Paly basketball for 11 years, and, in their time, led the team to a California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) division II state championship in 2006 before stepping down in 2008. Last year’s coach Adam Sax left the team after five years of being with the team. Because Diepenbrock liked the group of players on the team this year, he decided to coach once again.
“[Diepenbrock is] doing a ton, from fundamentals to a whole new playbook,” Simison said. “We have a whole new coaching staff and each one plays their part. [There is] a conditioning coach [and], the head coach [Diepenbrock] who is redoing the whole system compared to our old coach. Our new coaches’s techniques are focused on defensive and work ethic.”
On Nov. 30, the team had a pre-season game against Junipero Serra High School which they lost 42-65. The team is still working on their rhythm.
“I think we’re starting to understand our offense a bit better and starting to play some better defense,” senior Justin Hull said. “There’s still a lot of room to improve and hopefully we’ll be ready for our first game on Thursday.”
On Thursday, the Vikings played a three-day tournament at Piedmont Hills. This is the Vikes first match of the season. Diepenbrock had a solid objective for their upcoming match.
“My goal for Thursday is for us to play solid man defense, and take care of the ball so we can get as many shots as possible,” Diepenbrock said.