For most Bellarmine students, a typical day goes like this: get to school by 8:05, go to your classes for the day, maybe have a club meeting at lunch, do some homework during your highly-valued free period, and then go home between 3:00 to 5:30 depending on if you are a Bellarmine athlete or in any clubs. But for about 14 Bells, their day looks a lot longer.
For example, a typical Monday for one of the 14 boys on the JV basketball team will be like any other school day, but after school is very different. First, they will go to weight room from about 3:00 to 3:45. After that, most rush to get in as much homework as they can from 4:00 to about 5:20. Later, they will go over to the gym early to shoot around before a 6:00-8:00 pm practice. After that late practice, all go home, eat dinner, and then start homework again around 9:00 pm.
Gio Saso ’19, JV captain, gives the Bellarmine community insight on how he survives the long practices and how the team stays engaged during the late nights.
Gio has been playing basketball all his life. Gio has discovered his passion for the game of basketball when he was four years old at the local YMCA. Throughout the years of competition, Gio has developed a desire to win that is second to none on the JV team. “I love competing every single day with my brothers and there is no better feeling than giving all the energy I have combined with the effort of the rest of my teammates to produce a win,” he said.
For Gio, being a team captain is a great honor that he takes very seriously. “I feel I have a responsibility. I need to lead by example and let my teammates hold themselves to a high standard … I need to encourage and be the support for my teammates when things go bad,” Gio said. “Also, I need to hold myself accountable for not only playing my best, but make sure everyone is giving their all as well.”
The JV team this year has had a rough start of just 1-4 but has since bounced back to a 14-7 record. “We never stop working in practice and realize we have to take it one game at a time,” Gio said. “We play with the motto ‘Team Together’ in every game.”
Being at school 12 hours a day is no small task but after many months, Gio feels he has it down. “Most of days, I get something to eat whether it be a Cindy’s sandwich or Subway sandwich. Then I do some of my homework before I shoot around before practice officially starts,” he said. “Time management has become key because when I get home from practice, shower, and eat dinner, it’s already 9 p.m.”
To Gio, however, it’s all worth it “at the end of the day when the team gets a win.” He added, “Our goal is to win the WCAL so if we can just muster enough wins, our goal will be completed and everything in the past will totally be worth it.”
Bellarmine’s JV team will face Valley Christian at home this Wednesday at 6pm.