PATERSON, NJ - Coming off a 15-13 season last year, the John F. Kennedy High School varsity boys basketball team will open its season Friday night against crosstown rival Eastside in JFK's gym.
Veteran coach James Ring is hoping the team's overall quickness will be enough to overcome a lack of height and the youthful, somewhat inexperienced makeup of the team.
"We will be young athletic and quick but we lack size," Ring said. "We will go on how far our group of young guards will take us."
Sophomore guard Alphonso Gee, 5-10, lit it up as a freshman, averaging 18.6 points last season. Joining Gee in the backcourt will be junior Jalani Morris, who averaged 6.0 rebounds a game, and junior Aalim Jones, a point guard who missed the last two months of the 2012-13 season and whom Ring hopes to have for the entire year to run the Knights' offense this season. Jones handed out eight assists in an early-season victory over Union City last year.
"We have one senior, and one player over 6-foot-3," Ring said. Junior Jamal Thompson, a 6-5 forward, is the biggest player on the Knights' roster.