Talent was lost when last season ended and graduating seniors finished their college careers. Yet The Master’s College men’s basketball team that remains has the ability to make this season memorable. This team is young, no seniors, but expectations are high as the Mustangs embarks on its 2015-2016 season.
“We really have an opportunity to build something special over a two-year period,” says head coach Ken Sugarman.
Some may assume that a young team could struggle to make an impact in the Golden State Athletic Conference, but that is not how Sugarman views his team. He sees potential.
“They’re teachable.” Sugarman says. “That’s my favorite part. If you have guys that are humble enough to listen and be teachable and coachable, and if you combine that with a hard working team, then you have a chance for that team to reach its potential.”
Willingness to work hard will give them the opportunity to be a defensively effective team. Their humble coach ability and selfless mindset will contribute to the foreseen strengths of this team.
“I expect us to be a team that moves the ball well” Sugarman says. “I think we should have a chance to get great shots because we have an unselfish mentality on our team.”
This mentality will stem from their commitment to one another.
“We all have a sense of loyalty towards one another” team captain Evan Jenkins says. “That is what drives us to work hard.”
Their motivation will come from the teammate standing next to them.
Freshman power forward Kaleb Anderson believes their unity adds to their potential.
“We are more of a unit and we are communicating well and going after one goal as a team, rather than five individuals on the court” Anderson says.
There are new arrivals Sugarman thinks will be major contributors to the team’s success this season.
“One big one was here but didn’t play last year, and that was Phillip Webb.” Sugarman says. “He has really just transformed himself as a player and is really our go-to guy inside.”
Sugarman also believes Anderson will be a major component to this year’s team.
“Kaleb and Phil are learning how to play really well together.” Sugarman says about the team’s tallest forwards. “They’re both finding each other, passing the ball and because of their size and their athleticism they allow us to do some special things on the court.”
Jenkins thinks that what has unified them as a team are the challenges that they have overcome.
“Coach has been challenging us every day, and in new ways every day” Jenkins says. “And through those challenges we’ve gotten a lot closer, just as brothers off the court and as teammates on the court.”
Jenkins is excited to see how this team is challenged and how they will come together to overcome what this season presents.
“I think that the product you will see on the court is a reflection of our brotherhood off the court.” Jenkins says about his team that motivates him to work hard.
By Hannah Karlberg