Without Coffey, boys basketball still succeeding


The team huddles up before Tuesday’s 89-69 win over Burnsville.

Trianna Downing, Staff Reporter

Amir Coffey, junior, is currently the number one recruit in Minn. and has offers from several schools such as the University of Arizona, Iowa State University and Penn State University.

Unfortunately for the Royals, an unforeseen injury during a game against Burnsville on Dec. 3 sidelined Coffey.

After coming down on a rebound attempt, Coffey fell to the floor and was taken off the court to the hospital.

Coffey suffered an ACL tear, deep bone bruising, and a sprained MCL. Coffey had surgery on Dec. 22 and will undergo physical therapy for the next six to eight months. He will not be returning for the remainder of the season.

“Now I have to keep my head high and stay focused,” Coffey said. “It’s important that I work hard to get back on the court. There’s a lot of college and NBA players that had or have the same injury I do. I know I can get better, too.”

Currently, the varsity boys basketball team has an overall record of 12-4 and a conference record of 3-0, with wins against Chanhassen, Wayzata, Eden Prairie and Edina and losses against Champlin Park, Shakopee, and Maple Grove.

Without the participation of Coffey, the team believes the only way to make up for his absence is for players to work hard and demonstrate more leadership.

“Obviously Amir’s one of the bigger assets of our team,” said Simon Wright, sophomore. “Luckily people are stepping up, so that’s good.”

The Royals are ranked fourth in state, 124th nationally, and have players such as John Warren, senior, averaging 17 points per game, and Xavier Johnson, junior, averaging 13.4. Before his injury Coffey was averaging 30 points per game.

“I would like to think we’re successful because we help teach kids,” said Mr. Ken Novak Jr., head coach and Social Studies. “We’re teaching kids how to discipline themselves, how to work hard and how to strive for excellence, and to figure out other ways to accomplish their goals.”

While the dream is to win the state championship, teamwork is the number one goal.

“There are certain things we do as a team to make ourselves successful, winning state or not,” Novak said. “But our first priority is playing as a team. And if we’re doing that and it’s working, the results will take care of themselves.”