Basketball preseason at began last week. Led by Coach Tony Dickens, the team is hoping to rebound from the loss of their leading scorer last year.
Dickens spoke with Patch about the upcoming season.
Wheaton Patch: Give us a quick recap of last year's teams, both the varsity and junior varsity.
Tony Dickens: Last year I believe the JV played around .500 ball. The varsity won one playoff game and lost in the second round. We went through some injuries and had some things going on, but overall it was a pretty productive year.
Patch: What are your expectations as far as transitioning from last year to this year?
Dickens: We return three starters but we lost probably about 35 percent of our scoring with Ed Dyson, who graduated. Our point guard and our five man are very important to what we do. We have a cohesive unit, so I expect pretty good results this year.
Patch: Where do you expect the scoring to come from with Dyson gone?
Dickens: We're pretty balanced this year. I think last year we kind of relied maybe on one person too much, but this year with inside and outside, I can't say we're really a guard-oriented team. It's probably both, with both of our big men and our guards. So I would say we're more balanced than last year. Maybe we're not as individually talented with the person that we lost in Ed Dyson, but overall we're pretty balanced.
Patch also spoke with Northwood Athletic Director Marco Fuggitti about the boys basketball program.
Patch: Describe your relationship with Coach Dickens.
Fuggitti: When I took over the job, he already had that position. We have a very good working relationship. He's very upfront, and lets me know what's going on in his programs.
Patch: What are your expectations for the basketball team this year?
Fuggitti: I actually do have pretty high expectations for this group. Even though we did lose an important starter from last year, this year we have a lot of players that are willing to step up. The quickness that we have and the fact that we will have to use more than just one player to score, will help us in the end.
Patch: How involved is the Northwood community in the basketball program?
Fuggitti: I think each year the turnouts are getting bigger and bigger. Obviously it helps to have a decent program, but we're starting to make a name in the basketball area, and I think just by winning, people are starting to recognize, both boys and girls, that the Northwood programs are moving forward.
The Northwood basketball season kicks off on Dec. 10, when both the varsity and JV teams host Seneca Valley High School. The JV team will play at 5:15 p.m. and the varsity will play at 7.
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