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December 2, 2010     Lovell Chronicle
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www. LovellC h ron icle.co m December 2, 2010 I The Lovell Chronicle I 7 Lovell boys BY DAVID PECK The Lovell Bulldogs were kind of a Cin- derella team last year, overcoming a huge first-round loss to Wind River in the region- al tournament to not only qualify for State but to win the consolation championship in Casper. With that title under their belts and coming offan 18-10 season in what was said to be a bit of a rebuilding year, the Bulldogs will have a target on their backs this season but are ready for the challenge, coach Brian May said in a pre-season interview. May said the team worked hard during the summer and is working hard in prac- tice, as well, as the Bulldogs prepare for this weekend's Big Horn Basin Shootout in south Big Horn County. "I was real pleased with the kids' turn- out this summer in the weight room, in the gym and attending team camps," May said. "Others went to individual camps, too. I was pleased. They spent a lot of time in the gym to get better. I would like to thank the ath- letes and the parents for supporting that." May said having a year under his belt has helped the players who have been in the system respond a lot quicker this year to the offensive and defensive schemes he is imple- menting. "Practice is going really well. The ener- gy is up and the kids are asserting them- selves and competing against each other," May said. "It's a good thing, the competition in practice and how hard they're going at each other. May provided his evaluation of this year's team, by position: Point guard: Junior Colin May returns at the point and will also play some "two" guard this season, Coach May said. "Colin's speed has improved," the coach said. "He's a lot quicker and his jump shoot- ing has improved. He spent a lot of time shooting and ball-handling. I expect his de- cision-making to be better." Backing up May and moving to the point when May moves to the "two" will be fellow junior Steven Pickett, Coach May said, not- ing, "Steven will provide good leadership at the point, too. One of his biggest strengths is defense and his ability to see the floor. He's a good free-throw shooter and has a good attitude. He'll do anything you ask him to do." Also seeing time at the point will be sophomore Dylan Hultgren. May said Hult- Rocky Mountain boys m DAVID PECK Lovell Bulldogs coach Brian May instructs his team in a new offensive set during practice Tuesday at Winterholler Gym. Working with their coach are (l-r) Jeff Lewis, Collin McArthur and Dylan Hultgren. The Bulldogs open the season Friday at the Big Horn Basin Shootout, taking on Kemmerer at 2:15 p.m. in Basin. gren sees the floor really well and passes has improved, as well. well. "One thing I like about Jared is that he Two-three (wings): Senior Tyrel Harri- understands the plays, which helps in prac- son (6-4) is a returning starter who emerged tice. His ball-handling is coming along, and as a weapon and a leader last season,the team camps really helped him," May "Tyrel has improved his ability to han- said. die the basketball and his jump-shooting," Junior McKayan May (6-1) will also May said. "Rebounding is a strength for see time in the wing, as will junior Hunt- him, and he's a good defensive player. He er Hinckley. May has "good length" and is enjoys getting after people defensively and quick, Coach May said, adding, "His shoot- sticking on them." ing is improving and his defense is progress- Senior Aaron Clark (6-3) has improveding." his strength and has spent a lot of time Hinckleyis a quick defensive player who working on his post moves and on shooting, sticks with his opponent and is also coming May said, adding, "Aaron has worked on his along with his ball-handling and shooting, speed and quickness, and he has the high- May said. est vertical on the team. You'll see him get a Four-five (posts): Jeff Lewis (6-5)can lot of rebounds. He's worked extremely hard play either the five (center) or four (power and will see the results of that hard work forward), May said, and can even play on pay off." the wing. Lewis competed in a summer trav- Senior Jared Minchow (6-0) is a good eling league over the summer, lifted weights spot-up shooter who has worked on getting and spent a lot of time in the gym and work- stronger, May said, noting that his defense ing on shooting. "Jeff is a very smart player who sees things and reacts to them," May said. "He has good basketball smarts. He's worked on his posting and is solid and aggressive. He also has a good perimeter game. I look for Jeff to be one of the team leaders." Cody Savage (6-6) played a lot as a fresh- man and will likely start as a sophomore at ,, the post or the four. t "Cody is a solid post player who seals hard and holds his position," May said. "He can finish around the basket. He's a good passer in the post like Jeff. I like that about Cody and Jeff. Cody will be a good rebound- er for us and can run the floor well. "Some of those kids are just gym rats. You sometimes have to kick them out of the gym. I like that about them." Senior Jake Wakelin (6-6) will back up !i Savage and Lewis inside. "Jake is strong and can seal really hard in the post area and can get some baskets i i down low," May said. "He has worked on i getting quicker and faster and has spent | time in the weight room." Also seeing time on the varsity team will be juniors Morgan Baxendale (6-2) it and Collin McArthur (5-10). Baxendale is a | good athlete who jumps well and is improv- 1 ing his shooting, posting-up and sealing,i May said, adding that Baxendale can run the floor well. McArthur is a hard worker who has challenged himself to become a better offen- sive player and has improved his ball-han- dling and shooting, May said. His strength is defense, the coach said, adding, "He gets after people, and he's quick. He's not afraid to stick his nose in there." May is being assisted this season by brother RJ May (JVs) and by Craig Lund- berg (freshmen). TOURNAMENT SCHEDULE i The Bulldogs will open the Big Horn if Basin Shootout at 2:15 p.m. Friday, playing the Kemmerer Rangers at Riverside High ! School. They then meet Wind River Satur- day 12:30 p.m. at Greybull High School and Burlington Saturday at 7 p.m. in Burling- ton. May said he is pleased with the compe-! tition at the tournament. "I certainly wouldn't ask for anything!] different," he said. "It's good to play those 1 teams, especially Kemmerer and Wind Riv- er to see where they're at. All three teams have lost a few kids but are always solid." Davm PEcx Rocky Mountain senior Jessee Wilson drives to the basket as part of a four-on-four drill Tuesday during basketball practice in Cowley. The Grizz open the season Friday night at 7:30 at the old Greybull High School Gym, taking on the Dubois Rams in the Big Horn Basin Shootout. BY DAVID PECK spends about 75 percent ofcourt, Simmons said, add-now been told to rest the Fans of the Rocky early practices on defense ing that the senior bring lots knee for a few weeks. Mountain Grizzlies will see and 25 percent on offense, of energy and is a great de- "He's real strong and a little bit different look but while installing the flex, fender in the press. Rome- isn't afraid to go inside and this season - at least until the ratio has been about 50- ro is similar to his cousin mix it up," the coach add- Christmas. 50 this pre-season. Adam Alvarado, the coach ed. With a little more ver- Practice has been going said and is a hard-working, Ward is similar to satile lineup of players who well, the coach said, though heady player. Bernhisel Friedly and finishes well can play inside and out, the the team is working through shoots the ball well, works around the basket, Sim- Grizz will be experimenting some injuries. Sophomorehard, knows the offense and mons said. He gets to the with a flex motion offense guard Michael Bernhisel is is a student of the game,free-throw line and has a during the early season to recovering from a hurt back Simmons added, knack for rebounding. see if it fits their personnel, and is about 85 or 90 per- Forwards: Seniors Centers: Seniors Jes- coach Michael Simmons cent right now. SophomoreGuy Jones and Brandon see Wilson and Tyrell Hum- said this week. forward Brady Winland is Foster,juniors Brandon phreys. Wilson is back after "We're doing some new missing much of the season stuff offensively," Simmons a year ago with a thumb in- said. "We're looking at the jury. He has soft hands to flex real hard. It's generat- ItWe're looking at the flex real come out and catch the ball ing some excitement on our hard. It's generating some at 19 feet but also finishes team." well down low. In the last couple of excitement on our team." "He's working hard and years, with the team hav- Coach MichaeJ Simmons has come out of football ing KJ Blackburn and oth- healthy and strong," Sim- ers down low and some mons said. spot-up shooters like Aus- Humphreys got most tin Leonhardt outside, the out right with an Achilles Altman and Logan Fried- of Wilson's minutes after Grizz ran a motion offense injury, and Logan Fried- ly and sophomore Bryce the injury last year, Sire, that was more of an inside- ly has been hampered by a Ward. Jones had a great mons said, and that helped outside game, but with the football knee injury, football season and willhis development. The se- flex, Simmons said, the Simmons said the team bring some of that leader- nior works hard around the Grizz will be able to have has been buoyed by the re- ship to the basketball team, basket and gets a lot of put- their "bigs" pop outside or turn of seniors Guy Jones, Simmons said. The senior is backs, the coach said. move inside, depending on who wrestled last year, and athletic, has long arms, gets Simmons is being as- the situation. Kyle Peterson, who sat out up and down the floor well sisted this year by Justin "Most of our players can last season. Both are work- and is as good slasher to the Moss (JVs), Josh Sponsel come out to 19 feet," Sim- ing hard to "catch up," Sim- basket. Foster is a talented (freshmen), Eric Honey- mons said. "That has al- mons said, but are impor- and very athletic player, man and Thomas Bridges. lowed the new offense to be tant links to the team's the coach said, who loves SHOOTOUT SCHEDULE looked at seriously." change to the flex, as well. the game and works hard The Grizzlies will open Simmons said the ver- THE LINEUP in the off-season. A scorer, the Big Horn Basin Shoo- satility of the current squad Simmons evaluated this he has worked hard to learn tout Friday night at 7:30 will be the team strength, year's team, by position, as different positions and his at the old Greybull High noting, "We have a lot of follows: shot and ball-handling are School Gym, meeting the people who can play a lot Guards: Seniors Kyleimproving. Dubois Rams. They then of different positions. We're Peterson, Thomas Trout- Altman is "pretty ath- take on Kemmerer Satur- fairly quick and pretty ath- man and Luke Leonhardt,letic" and is starting to day at 12:30 p.m. and Big letic at a lot of positions, junior Derik Romero and"thicken up" as an athlete, Piney at 4 p.m., with both We have multiple players sophomore Michael Bern-Simmons said, noting that Saturday games being in who can play multiple posi- hisel. Peterson has a cool the junior is working onBurlington. The JVs play tions. That allows a coach- head, is fundamentally his 15-foot jumper and will the Cody freshmen Friday ing staff to do some things sound, knows the offense be a good shooter comingat 4 p.m. at Greybull High with match-ups, and makes good decisions off picks. Friedly's mobility School (main gym) and Defensively, Simmons with the ball, Simmons has been limited by a foot- Kemmerer Saturday at 9 said, the Grizz will have the said. Troutman was the ball knee injury and he has a.m. at Burlington. same philosophy: "Stop the starting point guard a year been wearing a brace, Sim- "There will be some ball." He said the team may ago and also makes good de- mons said, but the junior is physical games," Simmons be a little behind defen- cisions and keeps his head, an extremely hard worker, said. "Dubois works hard, sively heading into the Big the coach added, and even with the knee in- Kemmerer is big and Big Horn Basin Shootout this Leonhardt is quick and jury pushed every drill to Piney is always big, strong weekend. The team usually works hard all over thethe limit, though he hasand physical." i ' i; i ! i rt i i