ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — Rochester Academy won just three games last season. Now, they’re the last undefeated boys basketball team in Class C in the state. Despite their unblemished season and being ranked 11th in the state, the Racers have a humble mindset.
“We do not allow ourselves to see ourselves as bigger than we are,” said senior guard Josiah Heyward “Because regardless of the fact that we may be undefeated and it’s a great thing, we may be state-ranked and that’s also a great thing, we still maintain that underdog mentality, we stay humble.”
The Racers are crazy athletic and have won their last eleven games by double figures. And despite being a charter school, this current team has played together since 7th grade.
“We know when someone’s going to back-door cut, when someone wants a three-ball, when someone wants a midrange,” said senior guard Deonte Major. “It’s just playing with each other and remembering the little things.”
“It’s been nice to watch these guys come up from 12-year-old kids to 17, 18-year-old guys right now,” said head coach Rob Cocilova, in his sixth season with RACS. “The way that they’re developing is pretty nice to see.”
Rochester Academy’s undefeated season is even more impressive given the fact that they don’t have a home gym, they play every single game on the road. Cocilova says they embrace the villain role, wearing their black jerseys every single night and silencing the opposing team’s crowd.
“It’s always a packed-out crowd against hundreds of other people and we’ve got the “X” on our backs, our backs against the wall, but thank God we go out there and capitalize,” said Heyward.
The Racers have never won a sectional title, something that motivates its players as they try and keep that perfect record all throughout the playoffs.
“It would be great just to know that I was a part of something that blazed the trail for other hoopers that come to RACS,” said Major. “It would be great.”
The Racers will take on Canisteo-Greenwood in the Class C1 semifinals at 7:00 p.m. on Monday, February 28th.