One sport specialization has become more popular in youth sports, but that isn’t the mantra of the Orono High School boys’ basketball team.

The team that lost in the North Region Class B Title game a year ago boasts Jackson Coutts, who just committed to Rhode Island to play baseball, Jake Koffman, who is a record breaking discus thrower heading to Stanford in the fall, Keenan Collett, a Fitzpatrick Award semi-finalist in football, among other multi-sport athletes.  Playing other sports outside of basketball is something that Head Coach Jason Coleman thinks is a good thing for advancing his team.

“I’m a big proponent of multi-sport athletes.  Anytime you can do something competitive, we like to push [players] towards that and not do just individual work on your own year round.  We try to push as many kids to do as many things as we can and it kind of all comes together for us from November and February,” said Coleman.

Training in other sports is also something that Koffman thinks is beneficial to his growth as an athlete.

“I would have a tendency just training by myself to lift all the time and throw, but in basketball I have to get up and down the court and stay fit.  I think that definitely helps me and transitions into track,” said Koffman on the benefits of basketball to his track career.

Even though Coutts and Koffman will be competing in college in different sports, there are no hesitations about giving it their all on the court for either player.  The Red Riots came up short in the North Region Championship a year ago to Ellsworth and has the team motivated for success in 2016-17.

“We’re a little ahead of the game because we picked up where we left off last year and it’s not installing and learning new things every day.  Right now, we’re right where we need to be,” said Coleman.

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