The COC Mens Basketball team season gets started on Nov. 5th. The team struggled last season, finishing with a 15-13 record and not making the playoffs. Hopefully, this season will be better.
Only two players are returning from last year’s team, Guard Ben Kimble and Forward/Center Parker Dominguez. Dominguez is undersized for his position at only 6’3” but makes up for that with his energy, and determination. Dominguez earned an Honorable Mention last season and is going to start in the post this season for the Cougars.
“Parker has the biggest heart on the team,” said Head Coach Howard Fisher.
Besides a lack of height, the other main concern is filling the roles of departed sophomores Brian Kimble and Brannon Bradley. Kimble has been the starting point guard and floor leader the past two seasons. Bradley was the team’s leading scorer and rebounder last season. Both earned First Team All Conference honors last season.
Taking over at the point will be Freshman Brad Wyche. Wyche is more of a shooter and not quite as athletic as Kimble but is used to following Kimble, after doing the same thing at Hart High.
“Brad is going to be transitioning from more of a scorer, a shooter, into the point [guard] spot,” said Fisher.
Trying to fill the void of Bradley will be Rafael Love from Grant High School and Wesley Bartold from Canyon. Love is expected to start and has impressed the coaching staff with his energy on both ends of the court.
“Hopefully between the two of them [Love and Bartold] they will compliment each other and make up what we lose with Brannon Bradley,” said Fisher.
Rounding out the starting line up will be third year student but first year player DJ Smith from Saugus and Freshman Dayion Cotterel from Santa Clarita Christian. Smith along with Wyche will be a dominant ball handler, and has impressed the coaching staff with his high basketball IQ. Cotterel is a very athletic wing who can also stretch the floor with his shot.
The young team has a tough season ahead of it with a very tough schedule and plays in a very talented conference.