BARRINGTON — Of the four Rhode Islanders on the St. Andrew’s School Varsity I boys’ basketball roster, East Providence’s Terrell Brown is receiving the most notoriety, but another East Bay area product may soon also be getting some much deserved attention.
As Henry Bolton departed St. Andrew’s last spring for Utah State, another Portsmouth resident, Cole Swider, has decided to attend the Barrington private school.
A 6-foot-4 guard, Swider has reclassified for the Class of 2018 and will be a freshman in the fall. Swider comes from a strong hoops family, both of his parents having played Division I college ball.
“Cole is another one of our kids with great potential,” said Saints head coach Mike Hart. “His dad played at Fordham. His mother played at New Hampshire. His dad is like 6’9″ and his mom is something like 6’4.”
“We’re looking at a kid now where the sky’s the limit. There’s no ceiling. He has all the skills. He’s going to have the size. He’s going to be a combo-guard, who may play a little point before he’s done. He has a very high basketball IQ for a kid his age. I’m really excited about him. He just needs to be patient, let it come to him. When his feet catch up to his body, he’s going to be tremendous.”
The third East Bay player for St. Andrew’s, Tiverton’s Seth Kourtesis, may earn a spot on the Saints’ Varsity I team this winter, but it’s on the gridiron where he really shines, according to his hoops coach.
Hart said despite St. Andrew’s not offering football, Kourtesis, a sophomore, is still getting interest from college coaches because of his exploits in the 7-on-7 version of the game he plays at the AAU level.
“I hear he’s a stud at 7-on-7,” Coach Hart said. “He came here because he liked the school, knowing we didn’t have football. He could be a very good player for us. He works hard, hustles. I really like his effort on the floor.”
Changes in New England Preparatory School Athletic Council rules regarding interaction between coaches and players in the off-season allowed Hart and his assistant John O’Shea to gather this year’s team together for a week-long skills camp. The event included a well-attended public scrimmage Monday night, Aug. 11, at Sage Gymnasium.
“NEPSAC allows us to work with the kids in the summer now, so we threw this together and we’re having a ball,” Coach Hart said. “We went bowling last night and I’m proud to say Coach O’Shea’s strike in the last frame put the coaches ahead in the first game and we won one. We lost the next game, but it was a great bonding experience. We have so many new guys, nine, it’s just really important for us to gel and bond.”
Once a confirmed bachelor, Coach Hart is finally walking down the aisle this weekend. He will be married on August 16.
“Saturday is a big day. It’s been a big week. We have Hoops with Hart camp, a mini camp for the team right before I get married. Why not? Camp ends Friday and I get married Saturday. It’s perfect,” Coach Hart said. “Janie Marshall is her name. I’m very lucky. She’s loves basketball, which is great. She’s a native Floridian. We met in the super market, Stop & Shop in Seekonk. I highly recommend it. “