The North Zulch Bulldog basketball team will play its last game of the summer season on Thursday, and according to the coach, they are poised to have a winning fall season.
The boys came up short last year, missing the playoffs by six points in one game. But Head Coach David Graves said they’ve made huge strides competing in 30 games this summer against teams from Madisonville, Centerville, Latexo, Alpha Omega and Still Creek. In the culmination of the summer season, the boys face Madisonville and Still Creek on Thursday, July 28.
“We’ve just been working on fundamentals, growth, defense and determining who we want to be,” Graves said. “I want us to be relentless on defense. When we step on the floor, we should know what’s at stake.”
Offensive Player of the Year Hans Osth graduated in May, but the team has several emerging leaders, Graves said.
Last year’s MVP Gerhart Weise, Newcomer of the Year Cole Weaver and Defensive Player of the Year Trey Crocker are all returning, along with All-District player Tye Douga. Transfer student Tyler Sanchez, who previously attended North Zulch schools, is joining the team. Michael Harris also has emerged as a leader, Graves said.
“We’ve got some guys who are really stepping up,” he said. “My first priority is not necessarily winning basketball games but growing close to these young men and helping them have accountability and character and get an education. We have a great bond. They also know that when it’s time to work, it’s time to work.”
Official practice begins Oct. 26, but the boys will hit the gym for weight training soon after school starts, Graves said.
“We’ve gotten a lot stronger, not just physically but with their mental toughness,” he said. “Thank you to the community and the parents for all their support. It’s looking like a bright future for North Zulch basketball.”