By Matthew Johnson
New freshman basketball coach, Frank Peters, has guided the team to a record of 18-4 so far. In his most recent win, Coach Peters led the freshman basketball Cubs to a 65-44 victory over St. Francis High School on Friday, Jan. 29.
A native of Chicago, Ill., Coach Peters attended St. Ignatius College Prep, where he was a student-athlete, running track and playing baseball. He walked on as a football player and ran track at Hampton University, an NCAA Division II school in Hampton, Va. Coach Peters said, “Just because you don’t get a scholarship doesn’t mean you won’t be able to walk on.”
Coach Peters has been coaching various sports including baseball, basketball and track for 30 years. Along with coaching, Coach Peters was an official for the California Basketball Officials Association and officiated a number of Loyola’s CIF championship basketball games.
While working as an official, he felt inspired to volunteer on the coaching staff at Loyola. Coach Peters said, “I always wanted to be involved with basketball, and seeing Loyola reminded me of my own Jesuit experience and my own Jesuit high school back in Chicago.”
Although he had previously coached basketball at various levels at Marlborough High School and Crossroads High School, Loyola offered a unique chance to immerse himself in a Jesuit experience once more.
Coach Peters began coaching at Loyola in 2010, originally working as an assistant coach for the varsity squad before taking charge of the freshman team this year. He said, “I have learned so much from all of the staff. Almost everyone, if not all of the coaches, on the staff have played college ball and beyond, and I am just learning what they have been taught.”
As far as the rest of the season goes, although Coach Peters wants to capture a second straight Mission League championship for the freshman team, he is more invested in the future of each one of his players. He said, “I am preparing my players to be varsity players, not just JV players, so that they can be able to reach their full potential. The team is full of a bunch of great guys who are great players.”
During practice, Coach Peters drills his players hard, according to freshman Alex Blanco. “Coach Peters really motivates us to run hard and work hard in practice. Because of his tutelage, we are by far a better team than we were at the beginning of the season,” he said.
In addition, Mr. Peters has seen an expanded camaraderie shared amongst the players. Coach Peters said, “The one big growth that I have observed on the team is definitely our teamwork. I have watched the bench begin to get really excited for when their brothers are out there playing, and everyone is just really happy for each other.”
Following the end of the season, Coach Peters plans to remain as the freshman head coach for next year’s class. He was excited when the thought of a new challenge came to mind. He said, “Every class, every year, every generation, every era is different. Right now, I am excited for these boys because they have worked hard, and I look forward to seeing them progress as young men and players. And, I am also excited for next year’s class, as they present a new challenge that awaits.”