It’s been said a team is only as good as its seniors.
If that’s the case big things could be on the horizon for the West Jefferson High School boys basketball team.
With a collection of varsity veterans coach Sam Seggerson is excited about what the 2017-18 season could hold in store for his Roughriders.
“We have a good mix of seniors with a ton of varsity experience and some talented underclassmen,” the coach said. “We will need to defend and rebound at a high level in order to reach our full potential. We really attacked our individual skills and team chemistry in the off-season.”
Three seniors return and all of them have a boatload of varsity experience under their belts. With Jared Vermillion, Lance Lambert and Jordan South all in place the Roughriders appear to be in good hands.
“All three seniors have been playing varsity for three or four years,” Seggerson said. “Even though Lance and Jordan had a late start because of a successful football season, they have been able to blend into what we were already doing. All three seniors have done a good job of providing leadership and helping our underclassmen along.”
Vermillion will anchor the interior of the Roughriders offense and defense, South will provide a little bit of everything and Lambert brings an ability to score from the perimeter. The trio of seniors have skill sets that compliment each other.
“Jared will be counted on to give us interior rebounding and scoring,” the coach said. “Lance provides a deadly touch from the outside and great defense. Jordan is a versatile player who can guard multiple positions.”
Other key players on the roster provide a variety of different abilities.
“Scotty Hunter is our point guard who sets the table for his teammates and is scoring the ball much better this year,” Seggerson said. “Joe Thompson is our best team defender and can play multiple positions on offense. Ben Casey has led us in scoring through our first two games. Cade Brintlinger and Mikey Fuller do a great job of playing hard and doing a lot of the dirty work on both ends of the floor.”
The new season brings along new challenges as the Roughriders move into their first season in the Ohio Heritage Conference. The Mid-State League was a tough conference for a team like West Jefferson to compete in because it was one of the smaller schools. Now it’s in a home where it could thrive.
“The OHC is a good fit for us because we will be playing schools that are similar to us,” the coach said. “We are still playing quite a few of the MSL teams in our non-league schedule and could see others in the tournament. We are excited to be competing in the OHC.”
With so many reasons to be excited about the season, it’s no secret that the expectation level has gone up quite a bit.
“We are hoping to be in contention for the league title this year,” he said. “How well we defend, rebound, and take care of the ball will determine how successful we are on the court. We must continue to live and hold each other accountable to our core values each and every day. By the end of the year we want to be playing our best basketball in order to see how long we can last in the tournament.”
Reach Chris Miles at 740-852-1616, ext. 1618 or via Twitter @MadPressSports.