SHELLEY – When you look for what the future can bring in sports, you have to look at the athletes and what they are doing to improve themselves and their sport.
There is a young man at Shelley High School who wants in the worst way to become an elite basketball player, even if it is just in Bingham County.
He wants his team to excel and is willing to put in the work in order to make it happen.
A year ago, as a freshman at Shelley High School, Alex Lott was the sixth man on the freshman team. A lot of people would have been completely satisfied and gone on with it, just hoping to be part of the junior varsity and eventually a member of the varsity, collecting his senior awards at the end of the year and then be done with the whole athletic thing.
Not Alex, as he worked hard over the summer, improving his game and trying to make himself better.
When tryouts began this fall for basketball, Alex didn’t just improve enough to make the junior varsity and earn a starting position, he improved enough to make the varsity, the only sophomore to do so, and he is going to be an integral part of what Shelley is doing to not have a repeat of a rough season.
“Alex is a great kid and is working to be an even better athlete,” head coach Wally Foster said. “He could become a really good player and we are counting on him to continue his work and show the kind of work ethic that it takes to excel on the floor and in the classroom.”
During a recent jamboree between several teams, Lott admitted to being a bit overwhelmed when he was inserted into the lineup. He said that it only took a few minutes for the butterflies to go away and to settle down. He grabbed a couple of rebounds and that helped the whole situation.
“I was nervous to be sure,” Lott said. “I really wanted to show the coaches how much I have worked to improve and they obviously noticed. I love the coaches and the other players and just want to be able to contribute in a positive way.”
Lott is already a good student, pushing a 3.7 or 3.8 grade point average and has noticed that when the season started, he was having to work harder on the grades than before, but he knows that it will be worth it in the long run.
He is also a student of the game and actually knows some of the history and the players who have made the NBA what it is today. He hasn’t fallen for the current stars being “all time greats,” but realizes that it is the Bill Russells and Wilt Chamberlains and Kareem Abdul-Jabbars of the world that were the foundation of what has brought financial wealth to today’s players.
Above all, Lott is excited about the upcoming basketball season and can’t wait for the first game at Preston next Tuesday. He knows that he will be a bit intimidated, but when he hits the floor, all of that will go away and he will be just fine.
The Shelley Russets are a team that is working to forget the past two seasons and start fresh and with positive attitudes like exhibited by Alex Lott, they appear to be on their way.