Sunday, September 27, 2020

Sports Person of the Week

Caslin Makes Key Contributions as a Sophomore

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Point guard Joey Caslin contributed to the Westbrook boys’ basketball team in a variety of ways as a sophomore this year. Photo courtesy of Joey Caslin

Point guard Joey Caslin contributed to the Westbrook boys’ basketball team in a variety of ways as a sophomore this year. (Photo courtesy of Joey Caslin )

Joey Caslin capped off his sophomore season in style with the Westbrook boys’ basketball team. A point guard, Joey proved one of the most productive players on the Knights’ roster this year.

Joey was Westbrook’s second-leading scorer by averaging 7.4 points to go with 2.3 rebounds and 1.9 assists per game on the season. He posted those numbers while shooting 43.3 percent from the field, 32.1 percent from 3-point range, and 92 percent at the free-throw line.

Head Coach Jeff Beeman was pleased that Joey bounced back from an injury as a freshman to put together a nice sophomore campaign.

“Joey is a super solid basketball player. He got hurt and missed half the season his freshman year, but he’s proved to be a smart, quality player,” Beeman says. “We were forced to throw Joey into the wolves at the varsity level, but that didn’t faze him. He knows where to be in our defenses, and he’s got one of the best ball fakes I’ve seen in a while.”

Joey started playing basketball when he was in 3rd grade. Since then, he has competed for both his school teams and on the AAU level. Sports have been a big part of Joey’s family for a long time, and he’s always felt at home on the basketball court.

“I come from a family who loves sports, and my dad introduced basketball to me. We would often to go to Celtics’ games, and that really got me into the sport,” says Joey. “I love basketball, because it is a fast-paced competitive game that allows me to utilize and continue to work on a variety of different skills. As a player who loves to win, my favorite games are the ones where the whole team contributes to the win, and everybody can feel good about it.”

The Knights featured a young core of athletes with several underclassmen in the starting lineup this season. Aside from Joey, Westbrook started one freshman, two sophomores, and one junior.

Coach Beeman knew that Joey was going to be a fixture in the lineup from the second he saw him play.

“I knew from day one where he needed to be. We went through a summer season and a fall season, and I knew he was going to be a starter,” says Beeman. “If you’re smart and you work hard, you’re going to be a successful player. Joey is an old-school type player. He’ll use the backboard on some of his shots, and he’s got a little teardrop in the middle of the lane that he uses. He’s just an all-around great player.”

Joey has formed a bond with Coach Beeman during his two seasons with the team. It means a lot to Joey that Beeman is the type of coach who always puts his athletes first.

“I think that Coach Beeman and I have a good relationship,” Joey says. “I appreciate his dedication to pushing us as a team, and I respect that he cares about all of his players beyond the court.”

Like many others, Joey has been staying home and safe for the past several weeks. However, he is still finding ways to stay on top of his game and sharpen his skills on the hardwood.

“I like to assemble some of my teammates and go to the gym and develop our game,” Joey says. “I spend a lot of time watching professional sports and our games from this season to learn what we could be doing better as a team.”

Aside from basketball, Joey is also a member of the Westbrook boys’ tennis team. In his freshman year, Joey played the No. 5 singles position and posted a record of 16-3 for Head Coach Dan Shapiro’s club.

“Last year, I took up tennis. Coach Shapiro encouraged me to play tennis last year, and I would have loved to play again this year,” says Joey, who’s also played AAU baseball while growing up. “Other than sports, I like to hang out with my friends and playing video games with them. I also enjoy going to the gym and working out on my own time.”

Joey is looking forward to the second half of his career as a Westbrook athlete. Coach Beeman has big expectations for how Joey can contribute to his squad as a junior.

“I think most importantly for Joey, we want him to be more aggressive shooting the ball,” Beeman says. “He’s got a great shot. He was more of a distributor for us this year. He can hit the outside jumper, too, so that will only prove beneficial for our team.”


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