Gilliard siblings the driving force behind their own success
On their driveway on any typical summer night, Tyler and Kylie Gilliard have played plenty of basketball together.
This season, the family members got to share a successful season on the court on the varsity level, too.
Tyler, a senior, recently finished a four-year career with the boys basketball team, while Kylie, a freshman, continues to keep a memorable season alive. Both have been starters for the Kids’ respective teams this winter.
Through it all, though, the bond between doesn’t figure to be broke anytime soon.
“It’s exciting to see how far he has come,” said Kylie about her brother. “He started on JVs as a freshman and the started on varsity the last two years. We have had a lot of opportunities to see each other play and we try as much as we can.”
Kylie recalled how their family ties began in their early youth.
“We would play as much as we could during the summer,” she said. “There were plenty of times we played at the Northampton Rec (Recreation) Center.
“We would then go get ice cream and come back to our driveway and shoot around until around 11 at night.”
Tyler also see his sister as a major influence in his career as well as his life. His also credited his father, Richard, for a being a steady stream of stability.
“She’s very competitive,” said Tyler of his sibling. “We always have played a lot of basketball together. There have been plenty of one-one-one games. I’m very excited to see what she can do the next few years. She is off to a great start.”
On the varsity court, Tyler knew her had to adjust to a new capacity.
“Last year, we all has a lot of different roles and I was a role player,” said Gillard. “I knew I had to step up this year and be a leader.
“This was a bigger adjustment because we relied on Aidan (Ellwood) and Cory (Weisenberger). We all worked together well this season.”
Kylie also make a quick transition as she has been a starter since the beginning of the season.
“I had an idea before the start of the season that I might be a starter,” said Gilliard. “During the summer, I was playing with the varsity girls a lot and things really started to click.
“I was getting more and more minutes and I felt more comfortable with everything. I kept working on my shot and I gained more confidence.