With the outstanding play of his Forest Hill teammates this season, Andrej Sikic didn’t have to work as hard on the court.
But don’t think for a moment the senior boys basketball star sat on the laurels he earned with hard work.
Falcons coach Chris Parkin said Sikic gave it his all in every game, leading his team to an 8-2 season in Tier 2 South Region play.
“In years past, Andrej was clearly head and shoulders our key guy and it was kind of a situation where we had good teams but we needed him to score 20-plus a game for us to be really competitive,” he said. “This year the nice thing was he was capable of putting up those numbers but he didn’t have to necessarily every night.”
That was because fellow board members Ben Trefler and Russell Shaul chipped in.
Sikic was thankful for the help on offence so he could hone other parts of his game.
“It was easier for me to just focus more on other things — maybe defence and not being as tired,” he said.
Not that he needs any more help. The key is Sikic’s versatility.
“Defensively, he’s got very active hands and creates a lot of deflections, gets a lot of steals,” Parkin said. “He’s got active feet — a lot of times he deflected balls by getting a leg out in the lane.
“If there’s a loose ball with a bunch of guys going for it he seems to always be able to come down out with it, dribbling out of a crowd.”
Though Parkin is at a loss to find a current cager in the NBA to compare his star to, he harkens back to his days when Isaiah Thomas and his Pistons ruled the hardwood.
“It would be easier for me to think of someone old-school, back in the day,” he said. “Like a Joe Dumars: good defensively but could score on you and didn’t say an awful lot — just did what had to be done.”
Still, it would have been nice to make the semis and play on home court.
Leaside ousted Forest Hill in the quarters, but Parkin said Sikic glided through it.
“There was disappointment, but you didn’t see him hanging his head, kicking benches or anything like that,” he said. “I’m sure it wasn’t as tough as some as the grade 12s because he knows he’s got one more year to go.”
For Sikic there’s always next year.
“It was a very disappointing end to the season, but hopefully we’ll make it further next season,” he said.