Coming off of a playoff season from 2014-2015, the Timberview Wolves boys basketball team is hungry for more this year, and coach Duane Gregory said things are shaping up well.
The Wolves finished fourth in District 14-5A last season and look to pick up where they left off after coming up just short in the bi-district round of the playoffs.
“I’m excited about this group,” Gregory said. “They’re young, but there is some good ability there and they play well together and seem to like each other, and that’s a good thing.”
Gregory said some of his stronger returners include Chris Mullins, Isaac Likekele, Tim Johnson and Colin Hadnot, and said to have a strong season and make a run at a playoff spot, it will be some tough sledding.
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“We want to get out and compete as hard as we can,” Gregory said. “It will be a very competitive district. Last year we had two teams that did not get into the playoffs that should have, and this will be that same kind of year in basketball.”
Over at Legacy, coach Marchie Murdock said he is optimistic about the coming season but agreed that the level of competition is pretty stout.
“We have about seven or eight guys coming back,” Murdock said. “I’m really optimistic and hopeful that in this tough district, we might be able to get a playoff spot. I know everybody is saying the same thing. We’ve got to develop our point guard position, because we lost a point guard.
“We have to keep continuing to play well and hope some of the guys that have been with us for two or three years now will be able to help us step up and get this thing back to our winning ways.”
Murdock said his stronger returning players include Tanner Neufeldt, Ben Ritter, Vidal Bradford and Trey Clark, and said to have a good year and contend for a playoff spot, it will take a couple of things.
“If we can develop the point guard position, hopefully we can challenge some of these teams for a playoff spot,” Murdock said. “We’ve also had a tough time scoring. We’ve led the Metroplex defensively four of the last eight years we have been open, but we have to find ways to score at least 50 points per game.”
For Mansfield, coach Jason Speakes said his team is in pretty good shape heading into the season.
“We’ve had a good fall,” Speakes said. “We’ve played in a fall league and a couple of shootouts and we’ve really shown a lot of progress. We were very young last year and our guys are far more experienced. Our guys were wide-eyed and wet behind the ears, but we’ve grown a lot and matured a lot, and with a little bit of experience, we feel very confident going into the season.”
Some of Mansfield’s stronger returning players include Mo Handy and D.J. Whiteside, and Speakes said his objectives for the year are clear-cut.
“For us, we really feel like we are going to be able to contend for a playoff position,” Speakes said. “That is going to be our goal for this year, is getting into those top four spots, which in our district is pretty tough.”