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1-on-1 with Javeion Gray

Senior+Javeion+Gray+has+been+a+starter+for+the+Baker+men%27s+basketball+team+his+entire+career.+By+the+end+of+the+2016-17+regular+season%2C+Gray+had+totaled+1%2C216+points%2C+418+rebounds+and+328+steals+in+his+four-year+career.+He+has+also+earned+conference+honors+each+year.
Senior Javeion Gray has been a starter for the Baker men's basketball team his entire career. By the end of the 2016-17 regular season, Gray had totaled 1,216 points, 418 rebounds and 328 steals in his four-year career. He has also earned conference honors each year.

Senior Javeion Gray has been a starter for the Baker men's basketball team his entire career. By the end of the 2016-17 regular season, Gray had totaled 1,216 points, 418 rebounds and 328 steals in his four-year career. He has also earned conference honors each year.

Senior Javeion Gray has been a starter for the Baker men's basketball team his entire career. By the end of the 2016-17 regular season, Gray had totaled 1,216 points, 418 rebounds and 328 steals in his four-year career. He has also earned conference honors each year.

Story by Chad Mullen, Writer

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As a four-year starter, Javeion Gray has seen the Baker men’s basketball team evolve from a basement-dweller in the Heart of America Athletic Conference into a legitimate competitor, beating No. 4 William Penn earlier this season and taking the Statesmen to double overtime on the road last month. As he closes in on 10th place on Baker’s all-time scoring list, he shares his thoughts on the team’s progression and reflects on his career as a Wildcat.

Chad Mullen: What goals have you set for your last year at Baker?

Javeion Gray: I want to win a national championship. I feel like, honestly, that would be big, not only for the school, but for ourselves. Getting the exposure on a big platform where a lot of people are watching the games, that would be really cool.

Mullen: As far as next year is concerned, who do you see taking the leadership role that you have filled for a lot of your time here?

Gray: A lot of it is going to fall on our starters coming back, that being Big Dan (Young), Nate (Guscott) and Clae (Martin). I feel like (Gregg Easter) is going to get a lot of burn next year. He didn’t get as much playing time as he would like, and he’ll be real successful next year. He’s a guy that can take the moment and capture it.

Mullen: The team has steadily improved since you first got here, and now this is the best Baker team in four years. What has contributed to the success the team has had this year?

Gray: This is our second year running a faster-paced offense, one that I like to play. Whereas before, we had a lot of set plays and just a lot of stuff to remember on the court, so it didn’t come as naturally to us. We’ve had a change in assistant coaches, so we’ve just been trying new things, and it has worked out in our favor.

Mullen: Of the games you guys have lost this year, a majority of them have been really close, like one-possession games. What do you think it will take to get over that hump come tournament time?

Gray: Coach always says paying attention to details, and I kind of agree there. We just have simple, small mistakes that the defense doesn’t really force. It was just us being unfocused. We always bring effort. It’s just the more mental aspects of the game where we need to improve.

Mullen: How would you say your game has evolved since your freshman year?

Gray: I’m not sure how my game has evolved. I always just try to do everything on the court that the team needs me to do. For me, it’s all about winning. There are times I’ll have a bad game personally, but we win the game, so I’ll be happy. Then there are games I put up good stats and we lose, and I’ll be upset.

Mullen: If you could pick one moment that stands out as a highlight of your Baker career, what would you say? I think back to the game against MNU, when you had 23 points and just shot the lights out in a huge comeback win.

Gray: Now that you mention it, that game was special, definitely a highlight. That’s what got people on campus sort of buzzing about me, and people I didn’t know from around the community would recognize me and talk to me. A lot of people come to the MNU games, and that was one that stood out.

Mullen: What sort of legacy would you like to leave here?

Gray: I want to have everybody who I came into contact with here to have something positive to remember me by. I think first impression is everything, a way you can leave either a good taste or a bad taste in someone’s mouth after you interact with them. I just hope I left a good taste and will be a remembered as a hard worker with good character and an overall good guy.

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