Bandys Trojans

Conference: South Fork 2A

Head coach: Adam Dutka (fourth season)

Last year’s record: 15-11, 8-6 South Fork (tied for fourth)

Returning starters: 3

Key departures: Ja’Tay Culliver, shooting guard (19 points per game, 5 rebounds); Austin Gwyn, forward (7 points per game, 5 rebounds)

Top returnees, 2017-18 averages: Charlie Styborski, shooting guard (9 points per game, 4 assists); Hunter Clanton, point guard (5 points per game, 3 assists); Davis Clanton, shooting guard (9 points per game and 7 rebounds)

Top newcomers: n/a

Outlook: Coach Adam Dutka knows the team has some big shoes to fill with the graduation of Ja’Tay Culliver and Austin Gwyn. But he said he is “confident that they will be able to do it.” Duktka said the players have been working hard this summer and fall, “and the guys are coming together nicely.” The key will be all working together. “This year, like years in the past, it will be the collective efforts of all five guys playing as one that will make this season great,” Dutka said.

 

East Lincoln Mustangs

Conference: South Fork 2A

Head coach: Jon Hancock (second season 25-6; 349-239 overall)

Last year’s record: 25-6, 13-1 South Fork

Returning starters: 4

Key departures: Colson Leach, 6-foot-2 guard, All-Conference (15.5 points per game); Kabian McClendon, 6-foot-4, forward ,All-Conference, third team All District (13.9 points per game, 6.5 rebounds)

Top returnees, 2017-18 averages: Sidney Dollar, 6-foot-5, senior guard, Conference Player of the Year, All District 1st Team (13 points per game, 9.6 rebounds and 3.8 assists); John Bean, 6-foot-3, senior guard, three-year starter (11.2 points per game, 4 rebounds); Ben Zirkle, 6-foot-1, senior point guard (5 points per game, 4.8 assists); Alden Horne, 6-foot-3-inch, senior guard (7 points per game, 3 rebounds)

Top newcomers: Justin Kuthan, 6-foot-6, junior forward; Miles Adams, 6-foot-2, junior guard; Petey Nichols, 6-foot-2, junior forward

Outlook: This year’s team is coming off a season where it won conference and sectional championship. Coach Jon Hancock said he is looking to that experience, especially from the seniors who have played in numerous big games, for this coming year. “This team has the ability to score quickly and in bunches,” Hancock said. But there are some drawbacks Hancock said the players can work through. “At this point, the depth is somewhat unproven, and that is a concern. However, we feel like we have some good players. Baring major injuries, I would expect us to have another very successful team. These kids have worked hard on their games.”

 

Lincoln Charter Eagles

Conference: Southern Piedmont 1A

Head coach: Bradley Gabriel (sixth season, 126-30 at Lincoln Charter, 209-124 overall) 

Last year’s record: 26-5 overall, 10-0 Southern Piedmont, lost in regional final

Returning starters: 2

Key departures: Kody Shubert, guard, school’s all-time leading scorer (20 points per game, 8 assists, 4 rebounds); London England, guard (10 points per game, 8 rebounds, 4 assists); Jehlon Johnson (10 points per game, 11 rebounds); Zeke Mayfield (4.5 points)

Top returnees, 2017-18 averages: Jackson Gabriel, 6-foot-2, senior guard, thee-time all-conference selections, (17 points per game, 6.2 rebounds, 5.4 assists, 2.3 steals); Levontae Knox, 6-foot-3, senior guard, two-time all-conference (12.3 points per game, 8.2 rebounds, 2.3 steals, 1.9 assists); Axel Holm, 6-foot, junior guard (4.2 points); Dimitri McCill, 6-foot-5, junior forward; Hunter Herrick, 6-foot-2, senior guard; and Tron Robinson, 6-foot, senior guard

Top newcomers: Anthony Breland, 6-foot-1, freshman point guard; Troy Fulton, 6-foot-1, sophomore guard; Sam Cogan, 6-foot-1, sophomore guard; Josephe Rhodes, 6-foot senior guard; Tank Fricker, 6-foot-4, senior forward; Carter Seitz, 6-foot-4, sophomore forward; Austin Williamson, 6-foot-3, freshman forward

Outlook: Bradley Gabriel knows his team is missing some key players from last year but said it’s going to be deeper than it was before. However, he also knows the team overall isn’t as big in height as it was and so they will have to rebound as unit. He is looking to experienced guards Jackson Gabriel and Levontae Knox for their athletic ability as well as their winning attitude, plus he said, they will be able to stretch the floor. “We have some older, more experienced players, but we also have some guys that will be playing big minutes that aren’t used to it. Overall, I think if we let the game come to us, this could be a dangerous team come February and March.”

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