H.S. BASKETBALL | Paul Laurence Dunbar Hopes To Repeat

12/25/2016 12:00 PM

Winning a state championship once is no easy feat, but trying to do it twice in a row is even harder. The Paul Laurence Dunbar boys basketball team knows they’ll have a target on their back all season, but they don’t mind it.

“When we play everybody wants to beat us because we won state, but to us we ain’t won nothing yet. It’s a new beginning to us,” said senior guard, Javea Richardson.

Just some nine months removed from their first boy’s basketball state championship in school history, the Dunbar boys are grinding away, knowing it will be hard to get back to the Sweet 16 this year.

“I think the expectations are to be- try to repeat. That’s what you got to try to do going in is try to do just as well as you did last year, but obviously we have a lot of new guys, a lot of young guys that we’re trying to kind of train and get used to the idea of, you know, finishing games, trying to win games and that was an experience,” Said head coach Scott Chalk. “The last group was more experienced and so they were able to kind of do some things that this group is not ready for yet, but so far, we’ve made some good progress and of course we’ve got Taveion [Hollingsworth] back who’s probably going to be Mr. Basketball so its a good place to start if you’ve got him.”

Taveion Hollingsworth is a senior three-start point guard, committed to Rick Stansbury’s Western Kentucky Hilltoppers. He knows expectations are high for both him and the team.

“We’re not as good as we were last year, but we can build up to that and I feel like we can go back. You know, we know that everybody is coming at us hard and once we get that through the younger kids head and they understand that we have to like, we have to do it again,” Hollingsworth told cn|2 Sports. “It’s never happened even if it did it’s not recent at all so what we want to do is make it back and win it all again.”

The Bulldogs are young, but they’re not worried.

“We got some good pieces, it’s just a matter of- you know, they weren’t in there last year at crunch time and that’s the difference when it comes down to where it really counts and they’ve got to make decisions and they’ve got to make plays to win games- that’s the part that’s new to them. The rest is not new, but that’s new,” Chalk explained.

Hollingsworth said he is just trying to lead by example.

“I just want them to see how hard it is and how hard you have to play to get to the next level and how you get to the state tournament or the district tournament or region. I just want to show them how hard it is to get there and how hard you have to play to get there.”

He added that before he wraps up his high school career, he’s not only hoping to break the all-time scoring record at Dunbar, but for all of Fayette County.

Right now Dunbar is 6-3, but undefeated in their district and region. They’ll be back in action December 27-30 at Lexington Catholic’s Traditional Bank Holiday Classic.

Watch the Bulldogs’ full story here:


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