Jordan Ioviero wakes up every morning determined to do something over the next 24 hours to bring the Huntington High School varsity boys’ basketball team just a little bit closer to a championship.
Ioviero is the Blue Devils’ first year coach and he’s always working on what he thinks the program needs to become one of Suffolk’s elite.
Huntington is graduating seniors Matt Girimonti, Omari Stephen, Lex Colato, Danya Danziger, Renato Erek, Jack Monahan and Michael Wright. But a solid core of great talent will be returning and interest in the program is gathering steam at all grade levels.
The Blue Devils will return Adrian Brooks, Anley Casimir, Dylan Coleman, Kevin Drake, Charles Girimonti, Zach Gordon, Max Rentsch and Henry Vohs next winter. The top JV players from this past winter’s team are expected to get promoted and some newcomers might make the squad, too.
Section XI is finalizing the 2020/21 league lineup. Several teams that played in League III are expected to move up or down with new squads joining the fold.
Ioviero is brimming with ideas on how to engineer Huntington’s rise. Many of the returning players are already training on their own after school, conditioning, shooting and working on their general skills. Players expect to compete in off-season spring, summer and fall leagues.
Varsity assistant coach Todd Jamison and JV Patrick Reilly have both indicated they plan to return next winter. Coaching staff continuity is integral to Ioviero’s overall plan.
More outreach to the elementary schools is also in the works. Among the possibilities are clinics, intramurals and additional opportunities to play at halftime of varsity home games.
Ideas to strengthen and make more competitive the program at J. Taylor Finley Middle School are also being kicked around along with the possibility of getting more students in the school involved in the sport.
The Blue Devils are also looking forward to the planned renovation of Louis D. Giani Gymnasium at the high school. The floor is scheduled to be completely refinished. It will feature a brightened look with new markings. The walls will be refinished and repainted. Improved side court lighting is expected to be installed, which will match what was put in place over the center court. Work is also expected to be performed on the home and away side bleachers and moldings.
“We want to the kids and the community to fall in love with the sport,” Ioviero said. “We are working very hard to bring a championship to Huntington.”