Boys basketball

Illiana's Martin has made an impact on the program

2013-02-16T18:00:00Z 2014-05-12T22:19:23Z Illiana's Martin has made an impact on the programMike Nieto mike.nieto@nwi.com, (219) 933-3232 nwitimes.com
February 16, 2013 6:00 pm  • 

LANSING | Illiana Christian senior Brandon Martin comes to the point when describing what he wants.

"I want to win a regional title and this is my last year," Martin said. "We have come close, but we just haven't got it done.

"It is going to be tough, but if we can win, we have the sectionals here."

The Vikings are the No. 2 seed at the Class 2A Seton Academy Regional. Seton is the favorite.

The Vikings face either Ag Science or Southland College Prep at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday in one semifinal. If Illiana wins, it will play for the championship on Friday.

Martin has a good basketball background as his uncle Terry starred for Horace Mann in Gary in the 1970s and went on to play college ball. Brandon grew up in Chicago and now lives in Calumet City. His parents are West Side graduates

"I've always played the game since I was little," Martin said. "I just love the game and want to play in college."

He said a few small schools have looked at him.

Illiana coach Tom Roozeboom said he noticed a difference in the 6-foot guard's play from seasons past.

"Brandon has become more aggressive on both sides of the ball," Roozebomm said. "You can see his maturity and it shows on the court. He knows how to run things and get everyone involved.

"He has that sense of pride."

Martin said he knows what comes with being a senior.

"When you are running the team and a senior, you have to step up your game," Martin said. "It is not just yourself, but the younger kids. You have to set that example."

Martin means not only in games.

"You got put that extra work in at practice, work on defense," he said. "You learn that by working on the little things, you can get better."

He credits Jon Zandstra with being the vocal leader and said the Vikings are close-knit group.

"We do a lot of things together like after games," Martin said. "That is also part of being a senior -- keeping the team on the same page.

 

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