SENECA — Over in the Land of the Irish on Thursday afternoon, the Seneca basketball team was busy preparing for its opening-round game of the Interstate Eight Conference Tournament. Having secured a first-round bye, the locals were working on conditioning at the onset of practice.
After the running clock ran out and the whistle blowing for the start and stop of the four-spot shooting drill, Seneca senior guard Jimmy David stepped off the court and into this week's question and answer session.
Q. We'll get to the team in second, but let's start with you. When did you start playing basketball?
A. I've been playing for a long time. I used to watch when my brother Matt and sister Jaci used to play in high school. Like everyone else, I guess I started in the sixth grade.
Q. Your brother and sister went to Seneca?
A. No, Somonauk.
Q. How old are they?
A. My brother is 30 and my sister in her mid-20s.
Q. You much have been real little when they played?
A. Yeah, I was a little kid, but I remember going to all of their games.
Q. So, when did your family move to Seneca?
A. When I was about 2.
Q. And you've been playing with all of these guys since the sixth grade?
A. No. All five seniors on the team went to different schools. Chris (Lee) went to Mazon (-Verona-Kinsman), Loren (Fisk) was home-schooled, Peyton (Schrag) is from Milton Pope and Brian (Bergeson) is from Ransom. It's kind of cool.
Q. Wow. Did that make it difficult for you guys to get to know each other as teammates?
A. Not really. The summer of our freshman year helped us out a lot. That's when we got used to each other and everyone figured out their roles. Though we had a lot more kids out back then.
Q. Looking at this year, how what would your assessment of the team be to this point?
A. I think we've been playing good. We've had our slip-ups here and there but we know we still have work to do.
Q. You guys started the season by winning your own tournament but then had a somewhat early exit out of the winner's bracket in Plano. What was the difference?
A. We played more as a team in the (Seneca) Thanksgiving Tournament. Everyone was clicking. Then we went to Plano, played Ottawa and kind of slipped up there. But from the first game I thought we played well since then.
Q. You guys are the No. 1 seed in the Interstate Eight Conference Tournament this year. Do you feel you guys have earned it?
A. I do. I feel like we have.
Q. Who do you think the teams to beat will be?
A. I'm not sure about who we'll play in the first game, but at some point, we'll most likely see Herscher or Lisle.
Q. Do you think the team is capable of winning it?
A. Yeah. It's been one of our goals coming into the season. We want to be undefeated in conference and win the conference tournament.
Q. What is it going to take?
A. Everyone has to come together and play basketball like we are used to. We can't slip up and play the other team's game. We also have to work on defense because that is the part of the game that ultimately gets us going.
Q. Lastly, how far do you think this team can go this year?
A. I don't know yet. Let's get to regional and sectional times and we'll see where we can go from there. I think we can do it, we just have to work through the grind.