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Young and Wise

Junior Trevor Wiseman believes his Golden Valley Grizzlies basketball team will silence the doubters

Posted: January 12, 2009 9:53 p.m.
Updated: January 13, 2009 4:55 a.m.

Golden Valley junior Trevor Wiseman was named a captain for this year's Grizzlies.

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The explanation as to why he loves the game is hard to come by.

Simply, Trevor Wiseman just likes to hear the ripping sound as a basketball travels through a net.

His talent, on the other hand is easier to explain.

Start with the numbers - 15.7 points, 8.1 rebounds and five assists per game.

A 6-foot-6-inch tower blessed with a point guard's grace and a small forward's athleticism would find his way onto any basketball team, but Wiseman's ascent at Golden Valley has already landed him the title of team captain as a junior.

"For a junior to be one of your captains, I think that says a lot," says Golden Valley head coach Chris Printz. "He's matured a lot on and off the court in just a year."

Last year was something Wiseman and the Grizzlies would probably like to forget. After starting strong in the pre-league schedule, they lost all 10 of their Foothill League games and finished three games under .500.

As a sophomore, Wiseman played point guard and had to shoulder much of the load on offense. As someone who embraces challenges, it never fazed him.

"He likes the challenge and he likes to excel in whatever he does," says Trevor's mother Trish.

Now, Golden Valley is better for it. Along with seniors Maverick Ahanmisi and Stevie Thornton, Wiseman gives the Grizzlies leadership that can navigate them through rough patches.

"Last year, we didn't have much leadership," Wiseman says. "This year, we definitely have leadership. It's taken a load off my shoulder, because I'm not the only guy who can score."

He's also not the only one who sets the tone.

"I've tried to step into leadership," he says. "We're all leaders here. You can't just have one person be a leader on a team. You need the whole team."

Golden Valley is 15-1 entering league play, including tournament titles at the Simi Valley Tip-Off Classic and the Hart Holiday Classic. That success makes the Grizzlies an easy choice as Foothill League favorite, but it also leads to questions about last season.

"We've been getting that a lot," Wiseman says, "but this year we're a whole different team."

It's going to take a different team to win the Foothill League, which seems as wide open as it's ever been. And Wiseman welcomes the doubters.

"For me, I like playing away more than I like playing at home," he says. "I like upsetting other people's crowds."

It's going to take such an attitude to get the job done. Combine that with Wiseman's incredible abilities, and Foothill League foes are going to have a tough time sleeping this season.

"He's kind of a nightmare to defend," Printz says. "If you put a bigger guy on him, we'll bring him outside and let him create off the dribble, and if you put a smaller guy on him, we'll send him down to the block. It's been a big-time evolution of his game this year."

Whether or not it helps Golden Valley win the Foothill League championship remains to be seen.

One thing's for sure - Wiseman's going to enjoy the battle.

"I've been having fun this year," he says. "I'm definitely looking forward to league. In the end, it's going to be who has the most heart."

Nobody's questioning Wiseman's heart anymore, and as coach Printz says, he's earned that respect.

"I think it's unfair to Trevor sometimes," he says. "Since he was about 14 years old he's looked like a grown man, and that doesn't necessarily mean that you are a grown man, even through people sometimes put those expectations on you. That can be hard growing up.

"I've really been proud of him in the classroom and off the court this year, and that's been a big sign of his leadership."



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