Bulldogs look for big season

Published 10:50 pm Wednesday, November 7, 2012

King’s Fork varsity boys’ basketball head coach Josh Worrell is looking to help the Bulldogs improve this year on last seasons’ 18-8 record and regional semifinal finish.

It has been two years since the King’s Fork varsity boys’ basketball team has put a banner on the wall of the school gym for a championship of any kind. The team aims to end that drought this year.

“I told them, ‘A banner isn’t the ultimate goal, but it’s something that has not set well with me for the past two years that we haven’t been able to accomplish something (like that),’” Bulldogs head coach Josh Worrell said.

The Bulldogs finished in third in the district last season behind Great Bridge and Nansemond River, going 18-9 overall and 14-4 in the district.

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“And then we ended up going further than (any district team) in the (regional tournament),” Worrell said. “We peaked and played well at the right time, so we just had a good group of kids.”

Worrell has high expectations, because a good core of seniors is coming back that has not forgotten the end of last season.

“They got to the brink of going back to the state championship again and unfortunately came up short against Hampton, the eventual state champion,” Worrell said.

Had the Bulldogs won, they would have qualified for the state tournament for the third time in five years. Despite being up two points with a minute left, they fell 57-52.

“That’s made them hungry all summer long,” Worrell said.

Worrell expects at least five seniors on his roster and perhaps six once football season comes to a conclusion. The team will be dominated by guards.

“My senior guards are going to carry what we do,” Worrell said. “They take care of the basketball.”

These players include Rod Parrett, Jacorey Smith, Byron Taylor, and Akanni White.

“If we don’t have turnovers, and they distribute the ball as they can and knock good shots down, we’re going to be pretty good,” Worrell said. “Unfortunately, when you play a guard-laden group, if the shots aren’t going down, it can go downhill the opposite way quick. So, hopefully they’re up every night and ready to go.”

Though guards are numerous, height is not as much of a problem as Coach Worrell originally anticipated due to some surprise players in tryouts.

“I thought we were going to be (small), but now we’ve got some good length and long arms and athleticism,” he said.

Worrell’s biggest concern is facing a team with a strong player under the basket.

“With somebody that has a true post presence, we’re going to have to really work hard to defend that and make sure that they don’t utilize that as the strength of their team,” Worrell said. “And we’ll do whatever we’ve got to do to make sure that doesn’t happen.”

The Bulldogs play their first game at Deep Creek on Nov. 27.