Killdeer boys basketball will ride experience, hope for quick progression
Killdeer's boys basketball team graduated seven seniors last year, depleting its roster but not all of its talent. "We lost a lot of leadership from last year, but we bring back five kids that lettered last year, guys who played some significant ...
Killdeer’s boys basketball team graduated seven seniors last year, depleting its roster but not all of its talent.
“We lost a lot of leadership from last year, but we bring back five kids that lettered last year, guys who played some significant varsity minutes,” said third-year head coach Andrew Murphy. “They knew their roles last year and they’ll know their roles this year.”
Last season, the Cowboys went 15-7 overall and 7-5 against Region 7 opponents, taking the No. 6 seed into the region tournament before losing to Trinity in the quarterfinals.
Among the returners from that team are seniors Hayes LeMieux (13 points and 7 rebounds per game last year) and Zeb Doe, junior Hoyt Zander and sophomores Garrett LeMieux and Alex Sadowsky. Murphy said he expects the elder LeMieux brother to lead the group.
“Hayes is a two-time all-region player, and he understands the game really well,” Murphy said. “He’s our go-to guy this year. He’ll have to be a little more selfish this year. He’s one of the best rebounders in the region, and he’ll have to be confident that he can step out and hit a 15-footer. And he’s smart on the defensive end where he doesn’t try to block everything.”
Hayes LeMeiux had 34 blocks last season.
Murphy said he’s also looking for increased production from the other returners after another year to grow.
“Garrett LeMieux will bring the ball up a little bit this year,” Murphy said, “and we’ll rely on his defense and guarding some of the better players in the region for us. Alex Sadowsky, he’s not afraid to get physical with anybody out there. We noticed growth last year on both ends of the floor. He can hit a 5-foot bank shot or step out and hit a 3-pointer.”
Murphy said the team will also coordinate some minutes for newcomers to the varsity squad, including sophomore Dawson Schmeling, senior Shane Starr, and juniors Anthony Holding Eagle and Ty Truchan.
“They’ll all be adjusting to each other out there,” Murphy said. “Some played a little varsity last year, but the game speed will be a lot different. The inexperience will be there. It’s going to take a few weeks - a few months, maybe - to realize we’re not playing JV anymore.”
Head coach: Andrew Murphy (third season)
Last year: 15-7, 7-5 Region 7
Returners: Hayes LeMieux, Sr. (13 ppg, 7 rpg); Zeb Doe, Sr. (2 ppg, 3 rpg); Hoyt Zander, Jr.; Garrett LeMieux, Soph.; Alex Sadowsky, Soph.
Newcomers: Shane Starr, Sr.; Anthony Holding Eagle, Jr.; Ty Truchan, Jr.; Dawson Schmeling, Soph.