Nutleys’ Basketball Senior Night
NHS hosted its Senior Night for the boys' basketball team on February 9. Senior Night was dedicated to the five seniors on the team: Hector Feliz, Anthony Pinal, Donte Dubose-Carter, Richard Ngyuen, and Morgan O’Brien.
Hector Feliz is an 18-year-old senior from The Dominican Republic. He moved to The United States in July 2022. Without adjusting to America's utterly new culture, Hector immediately started playing basketball again. American basketball was different than what he was used to and he had to put extra effort in to learn it. “I come from a country where the basketball I played was free; only professionals played properly. I was just a kid playing basketball in the park for fun,” said Feliz.
Although Hector was new it was very clear to Coach Harbison that Hector had the determination and the skills to be a solid player. “Hector Feliz was new to our system, but his athleticism was apparent from the beginning,” he said.
Senior Donte Dubose-Carter has been playing basketball since he was in the fifth grade. Donte takes a leading position on the basketball team, and with that comes a lot of responsibility. Donte was able to take on that responsibility and learn to be the best player he could be. Donte believes he learned about the mental game as a team member: “Being a leader taught me how to maintain a good attitude, even when something was going wrong, to make sure my teammates stayed calm,” he said. Harbison was pleased with Dubose-Carter's competitiveness: “Donte Dubose-Carter was the player who was able to compete against any of the athletes we faced,” he said.
Senior Night’s game was a home game for Nutley and was played against Nutley's rival, Bloomfield High. Although Nutley lost the game 58-51, the players and the coach feel this season showed massive improvement and growth this season, especially in the seniors.
After Coach Harbison saw an overall improvement. “I think we got better defensively, and the players seemed to get a better understanding of the need to be mentally intense throughout the whole game,” he said.
Since this is the seniors’ last year playing for Nutley, many found memorable moments in the season.
Donte shared that his most memorable moment of this season was “beating Montclair in the Essex County Tournament since we were a lower seed, and they ended up going to the next round of the tournament.”
With these memories, most seniors take what they've learned from playing basketball in high school further to pursue their basketball career beyond high school. Donte Dubose-Carter and Hector Feliz both are attending college after high school to pursue their dreams of professionally playing basketball.