“It’s all about getting buckets”


Sarah Munzenmaier & Christian Helfrich

Graphic design made by Aynsleigh Penland using Canva’s presentation software

Basketball is all about getting buckets, whether it be a mid-range shot from the elbow or a three-point shot from the corner, that’s all it is, getting buckets.

The 2022-23 Fuquay Varina High School men’s basketball team was pretty good at getting buckets. This season the Bengals went 13-12 overall, but they played amazing in conference play, going 9-5. 

Head coach Randy Barrow summed up the season in just one phrase 

“We did well,” he said.“We had higher expectations, but with the injury to Matt Foster and a couple of other hiccups, I think we performed very well. I’m very proud of the guys and how they played all season long.”

Great teams are known for playing smart and having amazing character, which is reflective of their coach.

“Years ago I came across this quote called TCB. Take Care of the Ball, Take Care of your Brother, and Take Care of Business. It emphasizes playing for the guy beside you. If you do that, win or lose, things work out. If you do it for the right reasons and all of the guys in the program have brought in that,” he said.

Cooper Adams and Jake Hart have been in the basketball program since they were freshmen. Now they are seniors gearing up for graduation. They reflected on their last game as it put their whole basketball career in perspective for them. 

“The last game of the year didn’t go our way, but it showed how close we are as a team, as we realized that was the last time we’ll all play together,” said Hart

Cooper Adams looked at the game very similarly to Hart. 

“I agree with Jake, the loss showed how tough we were as a team as it was a good, hard-fought game. It’s hard to lose, but we left everything on the court,” said Adams following Hart. 

Hart won Defensive Player of the Year for the Greater Neuse River Conference, and in his last game, when he came off the court he heard the traveling Bengal Nation chant “M-V-P.”

“It was a lot of love from the Orange Crush, lots of support from the parents. It was a great season, and I felt all the love from the community. This was a great environment to play in and couldn’t be more proud of the fans,” said Hart. 

No one is happy about losing in the playoff first round. But sometimes it’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey. What a journey this Bengal team had this season. We’ll remember this team for years to come.