Senior Derek McCuiston reflects on past seasons and looks to the future

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Photo: Katie Lozier

The boys Varsity basketball team has finished the first half of the season and is entering the regular season with Senior Captain Derek McCuiston helping leading the way.

Derek, a leader on the court, described his role on the team this year and how it is different to him this year being a senior, “You know, I really have focused my energy by helping lead the team through example and holding up our reputation as a hard-working group of guys.” The boys Varsity basketball team is 11-3 and is coming off a big win against Harbor in a 65-32 route of the Pirates, and Senior Captain likes the direction that the team is heading in right now. Derek is not only an emotional leader for the Cougars, but he is leading by example on the court. As Derek puts it, “I’ve been having my best season with my highest averages ever throughout my entire basketball career here at the high school.” Derek is currently third on the team in scoring, averaging about 12.8 points per game. With this in mind, Derek has high personal aspirations for both the team as well as himself, Derek with confidence said, “My goals for the season this year is to help bring a league championship here to San Lorenzo Valley High. That is what we all play for. Although, I personally strive to be voted to first or second team all-league this season.”

Being that this is Derek’s Senior year in high school, with the end of the year just around the corner, the plan for the next step after is beginning to take shape, and it all starts with a plan. Derek still hopes to play at the next level for basketball. Even though Derek does not yet know where he wants to go to college, he does plan on doing whatever is in his power so that he can achieve the goals he has set before himself.  He says “I hope to possibly play at a division three college, and maybe even walk on at a division two school.”

In reflection of his high school experience, Derek has advice and memories that he would like to pass on. The advice that Derek would pass on to help anyone’s high school experience better is a simple change that anyone could apply, “I would just have to say that everything is better when you get involved. If that is through sports, group work, drama, or any of that. The entire experience is simply better when you simply get involved.” Going through all of his memories, the one that stood out to him the most came last year, his junior year, at silent night. Derek said, “My favorite memory was beating Aptos last year here at home. It was a crazy win and one of my favorite memories.” There was a variety of things that Derek said he would miss from high school. He stopped for a moment and came to this conclusion: “I will mostly miss basketball, but not specially the game, but the people that I have been playing with and have been with my entire life.” As Derek is taking his final steps in his path of high school, as well as high school basketball, we can all hope that both the Cougar Varsity Basketball team as well as Derek is led down a path of success.

By Ian Blair

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