Team sleepover creates bondingMonday, November 24, 2008 By Ashely Murrell
After a strenuous week of basketball practice, most high school players will head home to sleep. The Newton High School boys basketball team will sleep but not at home. They will continue the tradition of a team sleepover in Willis Gym. "Coach Don Cameron brought the tradition here," said Justin Helmer JV and assistant varsity coach.. "It's something he had done with past teams." Since Monday the boys team practiced twice a day, once in the morning and once after school. "The first week is both challenging mentally and physically," Helmer said. After practice on Friday the coaches send the boys home to spend a couple hours on their own. They return around 8 p.m. for their sleepover which includes an inspirational movie that is projected on the wall and lots of team bonding. "My favorite part is getting to chill with all my boys," senior Brian Baker said. The boys said one of their least favorite parts was waking up early. The team wakes up to practice at 6 a.m. and after practice, parents provide a breakfast. Another least favorite part is the sleeping on the uncomfortable gym floor. Many of them avoid that by bringing their own air mattresses. "I'm bringing my air mattress, my sleeping bag and my footy pajamas," Helmer said. A tough week, a hard gym floor and an early practice do not keep the team from having a memorable time at the sleepover. "My favorite memory was last year when Evan Gilbert was airing out his mattress and he jumped on it and he woke everybody up," senior Eric Grochowsky said. The team will continue to practice next week with its first tournament at the Hays Shootout on Dec. 4.