Justin Ketterl has fallen comfortably into his role as a true leader for Tennessee’s top-ranked Bearden’s boys basketball as the team’s only senior.
“He’s solid,” Coach Jeremy Parrott said. “Justin is a solid kid, and I always like to have a senior or two that exhibit those qualities that Justin does.
“When your seniors are steady and they know the drill and they know what is supposed to be done every day and what is expected of everyone every day, it adds a little continuity to the program.”
Ketterl has taken his senior year to exhibit the qualities of a positive influence on his underclass teammates, pushing them to thus further grow the team.
“I use my leadership to kind of push the guys,” Ketterl said. “I might not do as much on the court as the other guys, but I look at my role as helping everyone else know what they have to do.”
This is Ketterl’s fourth season on Bearden’s basketball team (26-1, 13-0 District 4-AAA), and both his teammates and coaches have felt Ketterl’s impact on the team over the years.
“He’s been able to lead us not only on the court, but in the locker room and just be the mature leader that we needed on the team because we’ve always been young,” junior Kordell Kah said. “When we get off track, he puts us back on track.”
Ketterl and the rest of the Bulldogs are hoping to finish unbeaten in district play before they go into the postseason, where they will hope to better their state quarterfinal appearance from a year ago.
This season had allowed Ketterl’s leadership and authenticity as a reliable teammate to be highlighted and will continue to aid the team in their success.
“I feel like I definitely help the team to improve where they need to,” Ketterl said. “I tell them how they need to improve or where they can improve.”