PEEKSKILL, N.Y. – Peekskill High School boys’ basketball player Jay Cabell is The Peekskill Daily Voice Athlete of the Month for January.
Cabell continued his great junior season with a solid, consistent month of play for the Red Devils. He posted point totals of 15, 13, 12, 15, 21, 15, 12 and 17 this month. He hit five three-pointers in each of two of those 15-point performances.
The junior’s month was all the more impressive considering he typically comes off the bench for the Red Devils.
“He’s so explosive a scorer that coming off the bench he’s instant offense,” said Peekskill head coach Lou Panzanaro. “One of his strengths is that when the game is going on and he’s on the bench, he sizes up what’s going on. He sees what the openings are.”
Cabell has flourished in his role as a sixth man, but it took some time for him to adjust to his role as a prolific bench player.
“At first, I didn’t think I should be coming off the bench,” Cabell said. “But then coach told me it fit me perfectly so I just worked at it and focused myself for it.”
Cabell has helped lead Peekskill to a 12-3 record this season. The junior’s goal is to lead his team to the section title and hopefully further than that. He knows his role comes with added pressure.
“It’s a lot of responsibility because I have to be a leader now,” Cabell said. “I can’t really make mistakes during the game.”
Cabell has 51 three-pointers in 15 games thanks in large part to his quick release, which makes him difficult to stop. Panzanaro sees an even brighter future for Cabell for the rest of this season and into his senior year, particularly as he develops his mid-range jump shot.
“Once he’s driving, if he can do that stop and pop, he’s going to be really hard to defend,” Panzanaro said. “Next year, he’s going to be a complete player and really hard to stop one-on-one.”
When Cabell heard his coach’s words, he responded in a way that fits his role as a team leader -- with commitment and a desire to improve himself.
“I just have to work over the summer and hit the weight room, first of all,” Cabell said. “And just take my game from there.”