The Fairfield boys? basketball team will honor its two seniors, Aaron Haines and Dante Cingire, Friday night before the Trojans host SEC rival Keokuk following the girls? game that starts at 6:15 p.m.
Cingire, the 5?11 point guard/leader of Head Coach Mick Flattery?s team has continued to impress his coach and the community throughout his senior campaign, and hopes to extend his career into college while he decides which path to choose professionally. Dante has the high team-average with 11.1 points per game while shooting over 40 percent from the perimeter and 47 percent from the field. He?s second on the Trojans with 36 assists and fourth in rebounds with 41, while leading Fairfield in steals with 21.
Haines is a three sport athlete, having been named to the academic all-state team in football last month, and he?ll help lead the Trojan golf team in the spring. Statistically, Aaron has five points and eight rebounds with one assist and a steal during his senior campaign. As you?ll hear from his chat with The Fairfield Ledger Wednesday afternoon during practice, Haines is soaking up the sun of his senior year.
Most memorable part of your senior year on the court?
Having way more fun with the team. Instead of running sets like we have been the past few years, we run a lot more five-out or five-out one-in or stuff like that and it?s a lot more fun and gets the team more involved in getting assists and buckets.
I really like the energy and the tempo we?re at this year. We?re really playing for something this year where in the past we?ve had low morale because we weren?t doing very good. Not only are we doing good, but coach has us believing that we can win and we are winning and believe we can go far.
Talk about being a senior leader Dante?
In middle school, I went to a smaller 1A private school and I was a leader, I would say, there. Then when I came here I felt like I could compete with the kids already here and instead of shying away from things, I could be a leader and my coaches over the years have helped me to believe that.
Talk about your role as a senior leader from the bench Aaron?
I don?t give any of these guys a day off, I just push them as hard as I can and make sure we don?t slack off in practice so we can do the best that we can when it comes games time.
What team goals are starting to form in your minds?
My goal since I came here has always been to get a playoff win. Last year, we caved a little bit with that opportunity and in the end got blown out by a team we had just beaten a week earlier. This year, I don?t just want to get one playoff win, with the talent and the team we have, I want to get one, two and keep playing for that championship and a chance to go to state.
I want to go to Wells Fargo to play. My sister had a championship team and watching her in basketball, I remember how cool it was and seeing how excited they got for it. It?s always been a dream of mine to go and be a part of a good, winning team like we have now.
Talk about the athleticism Fairfield has.
We have a lot of people that play a lot of different sports and that?s stressed here in this school. Getting out and playing different sports because it helps. Austin wasn?t so sure he wanted to come out, because he really wanted to focus on baseball, and we had to tell him and get him out here because he?s a big guy and we need him on the team.
We may not always have the size as other schools do, but I know a lot of my teammmates taking weight lifting and speed and agility training very seriously, and that contributes tremendously to why we?re all so athletic. I think also playing many different sports allows you to build up your competitiveness which makes you better in all sports all-around.
What?s been your favorite thing off the court?
Progressing a lot better in school over at the Career Academy and getting more college credits and learning what the outside world is about.
Being so involved is what I love. Most people like to just not do much their senior year, but I?m having so much fun just doing everything from FBLA to mentoring and all the other extra-curriculars I?ve participated in this year.
Are you looking at colleges and programs yet?
I want to study business. I?m not sure if I want to go into that yet or not. I?m also looking to play basketball in college, and see where that takes me.
I?m looking to go to either Iowa State or UNI to major in accounting.
When you look back, what are you going to remember about being a Trojan?
I?ve thought about this, especially as we get towards the end of the season. With Coach Flattery coming over this year and the amount of time I?ve spent around him off court and on court, on the bus, I?m going to miss having those talks with that coach. As much as he brings to the table for these kids and how much more fun it makes us when he?s around and giving us all of that positive feedback and positive energy at practice and before games.
Flattery is a heck of a coach. He?s coached me in golf and seventh grade football and he?s always a fun coach to be around and has had very successful teams. He?s good at getting people to be successful in sports and life.