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Lumberjacks Looking to Rebound

November 28, 2018
BY BRUCE CRAWFORD - STAFF WRITER (BCRAWFORD@WETZELCHRONICLE.COM) , Wetzel Chronicle

With Valley High School boys' basketball head coach John Kocher heading into his 23rd season with the Lumberjacks, he has seen it all - some good and some not so good. However, either way, Kocher would stay competitive even when it was not so good.

The Lumberjacks lost four starters to graduation, including their two top shooters and rebounders in Levi Streets, Peyton Bassett and Tyler Kocher, as well as starter Ethan Greathouse. It looks like another rebounding year.

The lone returning starter is Avery Kinkade (5-10), who will take over the point, while classmates Jerry Evatt (6-0) and Ethan Fluharty (6-0) will look to fill the shoes of the departed Bassett and Kocher. Evatt is a pure shooter, while Fluharty looks to be the re-bounder. Fluharty set out last season but looks to be ready for action this year.

Kinkade has worked on his game and is not just a shooter from beyond the arch; he can put the ball on the floor and take it to the basket, and he possesses a strong defense.

"He is the glue that holds us together; he isn't the biggest guy, but he is one of the most physical," described Coach Kocher.

Junior Levi Anderson (5-11) saw some major minutes last season and will help a great deal. Classmate Abe Satterfield (6-2) will be the 'Jacks big man, who can shoot the rock from anywhere on the court. However, one of the strong points in the Lumberjacks' projected starters is that they all can shoot the ball.

With five good-looking shooters on board, Kocher will look to spread the floor and kick the ball out to anyone of these players.

The key is to get the ball out on the break to Kinkade and let his athleticism take over and either take it hard to the hole and score, or kick it out to any of the others.

If the shot isn't made, let Fluharty and Satterfield pound the boards.

However, when you run and gun, you also get tired and will need to get some fresh bodies in that can keep the constant pressure on the opposing teams. The Lumberjacks have it in Jake Bush (6-0) and Jakeb Hall (6-0) off the bench. Plus, add Gavin Streets (6-1), Tommy Shannan (5-10) - along with big-man Logan Bassett (6-3).

"I like what I see in my varsity guys; they have grit and are determined to make a name for themselves in a positive way," said Coach Kocher. "All 10 varsity players can shoot the ball, and if we can stay healthy, you just never know what can transpire when you have boys who can shoot."

If the Lumberjacks can stay hot from the floor and play aggressively, and dot all the I's and cross all the T's, the Lumberjacks might have a very good season.

Prediction: 8-14

 
 
 

 

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