Young squad ready to start

Giants will learn as they go this season


Coach Mark James directs his players during a practice this week. The Giants open the season Saturday at Northwest.

As the boys basketball team gets ready to start its season, coach Mark James is more than excited for the guys to play.

“My goal is to have our guys playing their best basketball at the end of the year,” James said. “And, of course, to beat teams that we’re not supposed to beat and have some fun doing it.”

Every year is different and James views this year as  an exciting one as he welcomes a young squad who will have to replace the loss of three starters.

Senior Michael Beaty is a returning starting guard and is one of the most experienced returning players. Last year Beaty averaged 7.2 points and 4.2 assists a game. He is hoping to improve his game this year.

“I am working hard every day to get better,” Beaty said. “With good leadership on the court and making sure we all work as a team, we should be a pretty good team.”

The other player with significant varsity experience is junior Brennan Gillis, who has played varsity for the past two seasons. Gillis will see a lot of minutes in the post and should be one of the team’s top rebounders. He averaged 10 points and 6 rebounds a game as a sophomore.

The Giants will again face a rugged MIC schedule and will also host a holiday tourney. They start the season this Saturday at Northwest and visit Pike on Dec. 6.

Others who should see a lot of action include sophomore guards Chris Evans and Ian Dieters. Evans should see a lot of minutes at the point while Dieters is a deadly three-point shooter.

Beaty is just one of three seniors on the roster. The others are 6-foot-5 center Juwan Carpenter and 6-4 forward Jarrett Brewer. Juniors DeShon Tate and Jason Solomon also will see plenty of action. Other players include juniors D’Angelo Rice, junior Stephon Matthews and junior Tylor Shane.

“I just want to play to the best of my ability and help the team improve each game,” Gillis said.

This year should be very exciting as Ben Davis will be a young squad learning to work together. The boys first basketball game is at 2 p.m. this Saturday at Northwest.