Sports Spotlight: Charlie Treene

Arjun Aujla

Standing 6 feet and 7 inches tall, senior Charlie Treene towers over students in the hallways. Since elementary school, Treene has been the tall kid that just kept growing. While Treene played basketball and baseball growing up, he made the decision to focus solely on basketball in sixth grade. Ever since then, Treene has not looked back, having his eye set on playing basketball in college.

Unfortunately, COVID-19 made it difficult for Treene to get exposure to coaches, which is an essential element to being recruited for college during his sophomore and junior years. However, Treene was able to attend college camps and tournaments in Arizona and Southern California in 2020 and 2021. The summer prior to his senior year, he played exceptionally, and in early October of 2021, Treene committed to play basketball at Pomona-Pitzer College.

Treene started playing basketball in third grade for his Christian Youth Organization (CYO) team and then played travel ball in sixth grade for North Bay Basketball Association (NBBA). His experience playing in bigger tournaments across the state for NBBA shaped him into the versatile player he is today. Once high school started, it was clear that Treene had a bright future. 

“Freshman year was big for me. Playing freshman basketball I worked my way up to earn more playing time. At the beginning of the year, I was coming off the bench, and by the end, I was starting. That really helped my confidence moving into the next year and especially during that summer of travel ball,” Treene said.

Treene began on the freshman team and made varsity his sophomore year. Now, he has become a key starter for the varsity basketball team and is one of the team’s best players. Third-year varsity head coach Jay Demaestri has high praise for his power forward.

“Day-to-day he’s tough, not many teams have a 6’7” [player] that can move and shoot and attack the rim very well. We are able to put a lot of pressure on [opponents] teams especially when they are undersized,” Demaestri said.

Receiving a rose from Coach Demaestri, Charlie Treene embraces his senior night.

Treene’s senior season did not start the way he wanted after he injured himself in the very first game. He was out for over a month and the team wasn’t the same without him. Treene’s fellow teammate and junior, Ainsworth Fish was also out for the beginning of the season. Redwood suffered three losses without Fish and Treene including one against archrival Marin Catholic. However, once Treene made his return, and the Giants had their full roster, they started to play to their full potential. They won the Acalanes tournament in Napa during the holiday break and got retribution against arch-rival Marin Catholic on Jan. 20, defeating the Wildcats 63-40 with help from the 20 points by Treene. 

Treene’s impact cannot be underestimated; he can shoot, pass, rebound and take it down low into the paint for the hard-fought points. Recently Treene tallied up 29 points in a blowout win against Tamalpais High School. He has continuously demonstrated his ability to lead his team and hit crucial shots when the team was in a tough position. Fish, who is a captain and a starter for the team, shared how valuable a player like Treene is to their overall team success.

“When we are missing layups and free throws or when I am having a bad game, having a guy like Charlie Treene to pick up the slack is huge and helps us win games,” Fish said.

Treene and Fish are the only two current players to have been on varsity since Demaestri’s first year coaching in 2019. Having been his teammate for his first three years, Fish talked about the kind of teammate and friend Treene is.

“[Treene] and I are the last two [players] from [Demaestri’s] first year, we’ve been practicing together for a while. We were the underclassmen on the varsity team, so we’ve taken the beating for a couple of years. I think that has definitely shaped us pretty well,” Fish said.

 Although Treene was not appointed an official captain, everyone on the team looks up to him. His humble and reserved aura translates onto the court; he always stays present and cool in the moment. 

“I told him in the beginning of the season: just because you’re not a captain doesn’t mean you’re not a leader. He’s a guy that everybody looks to if we’re in a tough spot,” Demaestri said.

Aside from his athletic success, Treene has maintained strong grades in school to gain admission into Pomona-Pitzer College where he will be playing basketball next fall.

“Because it’s a Division III school, they don’t offer any scholarship money, so I had to get in like everybody else and then only did I get the opportunity to play basketball there and I’m very grateful that the coach offered me and gave me that opportunity. It definitely took a lot of work in the classroom,” Treene said.

Going forward this season the basketball team has high hopes. Led by Treene the team will control their own destiny come playoff time. 

“Our goal is to put up banners, that’s all I can say,” Treene said.

Celebrating with his team, Charlie Treene holds up the MCAL championship banner, fulfilling his promise to bring the banner back to Redwood.