The Paw Print

Hamilton Boys Basketball Preview

Justin Rombough

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Last season, the 2017-18 Hamilton Boys Varsity Basketball team started the season 10-1, before finishing the year with a 19-7 regular season record. Unfortunately, the Huskies fell to their hated rival, Chandler, by a score of 41-44. Although this was a heartbreaking loss the players and coaches expected to go further in the state tournament. However, the Huskies Basketball program has done amazing under Head Coach Doug Harris.

Coach Doug Harris joined the Hamilton family before the 2015-16 season, due to a new surrounding with new players and them having to learn a brand new system, the Huskies went only 10-18. The next season is when you really start to see Harris’ fingerprints impacting Hamilton. At the conclusion on the 2016-17 season, the Huskies’ record was 17-11. That’s a SEVEN game improvement from the prior year! Harris also was really get the maximum best out of his players. Last season Coach Harris had a star in Rashad Smith (14pts, 3.6 ast, 4.4reb, 2.5stl), thus leading him to get offers from DePaul University, Wagner College, but eventually chose to attend Pima Community College. Coach Harris also had some intricate pieces, including Zack Anderson (now attending Missouri Western State University) who averaged 12.6pts and 5.5reb, and Ryan Engemann (now attending Benedictine University) who averaged 4.8pts. Last season’s record of 19-8 illustrates once again that the Hamilton Basketball program continues to be on the rise.

Hayden Quinn, a 6-5 SF for the Huskies (12), was asked what he was looking forward to this upcoming season and he stated, “I’m looking forward to playing Perry because of the rivalry”. And Hayden sure is right; the two schools have had some battles in the last couples years. The Perry and Hamilton rivalry has been pretty even since Coach Harris’ arrival in 2015 with the series being 2-3 in favor of Perry. Tyler Curvey, a 6-1 G for the Huskies (12) was asked how the team can improve from last year stating, “We have put in a lot of work to prepare and get ready. Last year we came up short and none of the returners want (to experience) that feeling again”. This year’s’ Husky squad is quietly sneaking up the ranks, as in Gregg Rosenbergs’ ranking of the best teams in AZ he had them ranked eighth.

This season will be a challenge to see if Coach Harris and the Huskies can keep up the yearly improvements. Coach Harris was asked what he was looking for in his players this season and responded with, “I’m looking for our players to be passionate everyday about the game of Basketball. And to get better every practice as well as be a better teammate throughout the season.” Through hard work and playing together, the Huskies can see a long tournament run in their future. A new banner sure would look nice!

 

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