CHURCHILL — For the undefeated Manhattan Chrisitian Eagles boys basketball team, two starters, sophomore Tebarek Hill and senior Caidin Hill, have a deeper connection than just an assist on the court.
“We’ve been playing since the third or fourth grade," said Tebarek. "We’ve been playing together for a while, we try to make each other better every time so it’s just a grind.”
Caidin, a state champion golfer and basketball player, has high praise for the young guard.
“He is a very tough defender, he’s very quick and very handsy," Caidin said. "Offensively, hes a great shooter and then he attacks, gets inside, slashes, finds people, he really is just a great all-around player and I love playing with him.”
Caidin, a senior, actually taught Tebarek how to play the game when they were younger.
“First grade was the first time that I played basketball," said Tebarek. "You know, I did granny shots, was my first shot, eventually my brother and my dad taught me how to shoot regular and not granny."
They may not look remotely alike, but these two are brothers. The Hill family adopted Tebarek, now a sophomore, when he was 6 years old from Addis Ababa, the capital of Ethiopia.
“I didn’t know what America was so I was very nervous and I didn’t know what it’d be like," said Tebarek. "I was obviously excited because I had never been to a place where it was clean”
Caidin couldn’t have been more excited when he received the word that he was going to be a big brother.
“I was hyped," he said. "I have two older sisters and I was the youngest sibling. They liked sports but they were never really that into it. I’m like, 'Man, I’m going to be getting a brother to play basketball with, play all these different sports.'”
They say iron sharpens iron and growing up together has done exactly that for these two.
“Obviously he’s a great offensive player, so it challenges me as a defender and then he has to guard me and it challenges him as a defender and it’s great," Caidin said. "It’s just a great thing where we sharpen each other up and make each other a lot better.”
Caidin will always be thankful for having Tebarek as his brother and being able to watch him grow as a young man.
“You get to see him grow as person and see what kind of guy he is, and that’s a really cool thing to be able to have experienced," Caidin said.
And Tebarek will forever be grateful to his family.
“I was just a little kid out in the middle of nowhere, I was very grateful for what they did, very grateful for them,” he said.