MARINE CORPS BASE QUANTICO, Va. --
The intramural basketball season started Monday at the Barber Physical Fitness Center when Enlistment Incentive Program faced off against Marine Corps Intelligence Activities. MCIA was able to gain the first win of the season against EIP, 42-22.
MCIA showed they were ready for the season with team-focused warm ups and players who have played together for years. EIP warmed up more individually, but was no less enthusiastic to start the game.
“We have a lot of new players this season, with only one returning from last year,” said Jessee King, head coach, EIP. “I have no doubt we will be where we need to be by the end of the season.”
The first game of the season meant different strategies and goals for both coaches.
Josh Buchholz, head coach, MCIA, wanted to make sure all his players got time on the court and were able to play with all their teammates.
“I really wanted to make sure that everyone had a good amount of playing time this game,” said Buchholz.
King didn’t want his team to focus on the number of points they scored but how they played.
“It’s not about the points,” said King. “It’s more about the foundation you set for the rest of the season. Getting back into the fundamentals and basketball shape is the biggest focus we have for the first few games of the season.”
MCIA scored the first basket of the game, but EIP wasn’t far behind, with a basket of their own as Darius Mimms, an EIP player made a steal and drove to the basket for his team’s first points
The first 10 points of the game were back and forth, but after a timeout from MCIA and a change in their offensive focus, they were able to take the lead and hold for remainder of the first half that ended 20-8.
“No one is faster than the ball,” said King. “They are getting all their points from the middle, we need to get big at the bottom on defense and spread out more on offense.”
Both teams stepped up their intensity and fight in the second half, diving and fighting for each ball but MCIA’s focus on a keeping a two-three defense secured the 42-22 win.
“The first game of the season went well,” said Buchholz. “We had our game plan and we were able to stick to it. We just need to fine tune our offense and continue to focus on playing the game and having fun.”
Although EIP lost their first game of the season, King felt the game went well.
“At the end of the game we really started to play like a team and show some of our talents,” said King. “It’s always a challenge when getting back into basketball shape, but as long as we get back to the fundamentals and focus on playing defense, I’m hopeful for what the season will bring.”