Hawks have upped intensity level under Fink


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Viera High boys basketball coach Brett Fink, center, poses with co-captains Alex Aebli, left, and D’Travious Marshall, center.

Carl Kotala

Senior co-captain Alex Aebli likes what he has seen from the Viera High boys basketball team this season.

“We’re always running, always fast-paced, trapping (on defense) and running fast breaks,” Aebli said. “It’s all fast basketball. We’re trying to get the other team out of their comfort zone.”

“I think if we keep up the effort we’ve had since the beginning of the year, we could definitely make a run for the playoffs.”

If the Hawks can do that, it would represent quite a turnaround. When Aebli was a freshman, Viera’s varsity team didn’t win a game all season.

Brett Fink, the third varsity coach the Hawks have had in four seasons, has brought a new intensity to the Hawks – especially on the defensie end -- Aebli said. Viera got off to a 3-1 start.

“The message I bring every time I come to a team is let’s adhere to three core things – play hard, play right and play together,” Fink said. “And these guys have taken to it like fish in water. They have met my expectations. That’s not to say we don’t have room to grow, but as far as getting out of the gates, I’m very happy.”

Fink has also been pleased with the leadership of Aebli and co-captain D’Travious Marshall who head a roster that includes Nick Buren, Trey Schaneville, Dante Gamble, Tucker Espling, Esteban Alvarez, Don Jackson, Jack Calloway and Jarred Noreika.

Schaneville and Jackson – two members of Viera’s three-time district champion football team – have had a good influence on the rest of their teammates.

“They bring that winning mentality,” Aebli said. “They’re used to winning so they hopefully can bring that to our sport.”

With a talented, young roster and the kind of defensive pressure that can make opponents uncomfortable, the Viera program certainly has a bright future.

But Fink believes the Hawks can be good right now despite the team’s past struggles.

“I really don’t like the word ‘rebuilding’ and I really don’t think its applicable here,” Fink said. “There’s talent here. There are players here. There’s a will to win. There’s a desire to be good and to be successful.

“It’s just a matter of me getting them in the right place and then getting out of the way. There’s nobody in Brevard County … not to call anybody out … but there’s nobody in Brevard County I feel like we can’t play with.”