Friday, May 24, 2024

Brooklyn student-athletes reach milestones

It was a good week for Brooklyn student-athletes Jaiden Basinger and Shariah Gailes as both reached significant milestones on the basketball court.

Basinger scored the 1,000th point of his career in an 81-64 win at Crestwood on Friday.

“It was an amazing feeling,” he said. “It’s something I wanted to accomplish this year and it felt great to finally get it.”

His 1,000th point came off a fastbreak layup, and Crestwood coach Josh Jakacki stopped the game to recognize Basinger’s accomplishment.

“I didn’t really expect all that because we were on the road but Crestwood was very supportive about it,” Basinger said. “I thought it was really cool though; it just felt surreal.”

Brooklyn coach Jeff Shepherd gets a similar feeling any time he watches Basinger on the court.

“What he’s done in the two years I’ve been with him is incredible,” Shepherd said. “In his freshman year, the program was down a little bit, but now we’re winning a little bit and it means even a little bit more that he’s taking this on. Any time a player goes over 1,000 points is a big deal. I’m really proud of him. I can see him maturing every day as a kid and as a player.”

With his scoring milestone behind him, Basinger is laser-focused on leading the Hurricanes to a strong finish in the regular season, and he has some lofty goals for his final postseason.

“I really want to go far in the playoffs and hopefully win a state championship,” Basinger said. “But the biggest thing is to continue the run we couldn’t finish last year in the playoffs.”

As a senior, Basinger knows every game inches him closer to the end of his career at Brooklyn.

When the day comes to turn in his Hurricanes uniform for the final time, Basinger hopes his legacy lives on with his younger teammates.

“I hope that they learned you’re your own worst enemy,” he said. “If you believe in yourself and your team, big things can happen.”

Gailes also had a big week for the Hurricanes.

She opened the week by breaking the school’s single-season scoring record with 43 points in a 79-24 win over Brookside. Jamie Metz had set the previous single-game scoring mark of 42 points back in the 2004-2005 season.

On Saturday, Gailes then recorded the 1,000th rebound of her career while also setting the single-game rebound record with 29.

“It was great,” Gailes said. “It’s a record that I’ve been chasing these last few years and I was very excited to hear that I finally broke it.”

Gailes, a prolific scorer as well, considers rebounding to be an important part of the game and throughout her career, she has been inspired to do the dirty work in the paint.

“I believe that rebounding is the most underrated part of basketball, especially on offense,” she said. “Second chance points can completely change the momentum of the game.”

Brooklyn coach Jon Holko knows Gailes’ accomplishments weren’t accidental.

“She is just an incredible example of hard work,” Holko said. “She has really grown in her leadership skills over the last couple of years. Her teammates feed off of her and she leads by example more so than she is a vocal leader. When she is on the floor, she’s rebounding every miss, whether it’s offensive or defensive. The kids rally around that and they respond to her.”

Gailes’ impact on the Hurricanes was never more present than on Saturday when she scored a bucket to give the Hurricanes a one-point lead over Trinity.

She then suffered an injury and left the floor.

“When she went out, we went down by eight,” Holko said. “Our girls kind of froze and didn’t know what to do with her out of the game. She was able to go, so I put her back in and we were just a different team. She leads us on both sides of the floor. For being a big who can score and rebound the way she does, she’s really good at distributing the ball. We had six straight 3-pointers in the fourth quarter. Delaney (David) hit four, Genesis Caraballo hit one and Shariah hit one. It was just one of those barrages of offense that took it to Trinity.”

Brooklyn’s girls’ basketball program won’t be the same when Gailes graduates this spring, but she is hopeful her teammates will carry on her legacy.

“I hope they can see that with hard work and focus, they can accomplish anything,” she said.


Steve Hare
Steve Hare
Steve Hare is the Chagrin Valley Conference's Sports Information Director. He also created and publishes, an online publication dedicated to providing hyperlocal coverage to area high school athletic programs. Hare began covering high school sports for the Lake County News Herald in 1997. Hare attended Willoughby South High School through the middle of his senior year, then graduated from Berkshire High School in Burton in 1986. He played football, wrestled and was an all-Geauga county baseball player (1986). He lives in Chardon with his wife Paulette and their children.

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