On point: Barry polishing skills for senior season

The Barbe Bucs had a comeback season last year, winning 20 games and advancing to the second round of the playoffs. Leading the way was point guard Jabbari Barry, who averaged 18.1 points, 8.4 rebounds and 4.5 assists per game while earning District 3-5A MVP and American Press All Southwest Louisiana MVP honors.

Barry said teamwork was the key to the team’s success.

“It felt good to see the team come together as one and do things which had not been done at Barbe in a long time,” he said. “My goal for my senior year is to get all the way to state, I know Barbe has not experienced that in a while.”

Barry is spending the summer polishing his skill set, with a focus on improving shooting off the dribble, after coming off screens and moving to the right, his weak-hand side. He lists his strengths as passing, finishing at the rim, defending and being a leader.

He said he has a pair of co-stars in teammates JaQuise Richmond and Ethan Marque.

“We’ve been playing together for a long time and it’s been fun,” Barry said. “I know they can score the ball. Richmond is a funny guy, he makes everyone laugh. He’s good at rebounding and getting baskets when we need them, especially crunch time. He’s good from mid-range and in the post. Ethan hustles all the time, he’s a good defensive player and can make the deep threes.”

Barry said he’s using last year’s losses as motivation for this season. The Bucs season ended with a narrow 52-45 playoff loss to district rival New Iberia.

“That game was a good experience, changing the pace up and going fast, and me having to adjust to it, was great for me,” he said. “If we can all come together as one, we can go deep into the playoffs and try to win a state championship for Barbe.”

Barry said head coach Carl Klein has helped him with the intangible parts of the game.

“The most important things I’ve learned from him is that discipline and being coachable are key for being able to go to the next level and for being a leader for your teammates,” he said.

Klein said Barry is a tireless worker.

“He comes to work every day and works extremely hard,” Klein said. “He makes everyone around him better. He is always in the gym and always plays to the best of his ability. He has a knack for playmaking and getting others involved. His leadership has been big for us over the past couple of years. He’s like having another coach on the floor.”

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