|By Gaylen Duskey |
There is this commercial on television where a person starts out by saying "some folks say union construction workers have an attitude ..."
And it goes on from there to say what a good attitude it is an how these guys go to school for 20 years then work a jillion hours to become certified, or something like that.
That commercial reminds me greatly of the 2013-14 edition of the Calhoun High School basketball team.
This year the player have an attitude. An attitude that they can win and that something that has been sorely missing the last few years.
But this year's team, despite having but three seniors have a ton of experience including starting experience. The team also has a three-game sweep of one of those summer competitions which is something that it hasn't had for a long, long time including back when the Red Devils were still successful.
Those two things, plus a desire to end the run of 20-loss seasons, have helped the players develop an attitude where they expect to win instead of just playing hard.
This year Calhoun will be led by seniors Ryan Slider and Mason Sheldon, both of who were starters last year. They will be back by juniors Sam Brady, Tyler Gerwig, Lucas Wilson, Tyler Sims and sophomore Ethyn Miller. All those except for Sims were starters at one time or another.
Sims is an interesting story since he was a three-year starter for an outstanding middle school team then opted not to play basketball as a freshman or sophomore. He decided to give basketball another try as a junior and does not appear to have lost a thing from his floor leadership capabilities.
Last year Slider moved over from his shooting guard position to play point guard for most of the season. This year he'll move back to his more natural position which could make his numbers even better than last season when he led the team in scoring with 307 points (13.3 ppg), rebounds 207 (9.0 rpg), assists 63 (2.0 rpg), steals 60 (2.0 spg) and blocks 47 (1.7 bpg). For his all-around play he was named second team All-LKC.
Mason Sheldon, 6-3, was a terror on the boards and was called on at times to help bring the ball up the court last season. He hopes to use some of the toughness he learned as a two-way starter in football at tight end and linebacker on the basketball court this season.
Gerwig started most of last season and missed out by about 50 points of being a double figure scorer last season. As it was he ended up with an 8.0 average while adding 4.6 rebounds per game. The 6-1 junior had his best game of the season against Parkersburg Catholic in the final regular season game for the Red Devils when he scored 26 points while grabbing eight rebounds.
Brady, 6-4, started some late last season after leading the reserves in scoring for most of the season. Brady finished with a 2.2 scoring average.
Wilson, too, was a part time starter however most of his playing time came as a defensive specialist. He still averaged 2.4 per game.
Miller gained valuable varsity playing time as a freshman when he filled in at both guard spots. He finished the season with nearly a point-per-game average.
Luke Sheldon has been called the 'most improved player" during early fall practice sessions. Last year Sheldon, the younger brother of Mason Sheldon, played a little varsity ball while spending most of his time playing with the junior varsity.
William Baker, Nick Watkins, Riley Cain, Austin Gribble and Dakota Jarvis all played junior varsity ball last season with the 6-1 Cain also gaining a little varsity playing time.
Other members of the Red Devils include Cody Starcher (6-0) a first year senior, and freshmen Nick Cain, Dylan Heiney, Austin Hicks, Jerry Jones, Christopher Kirkland, Chris Thornton and Zack Yanero.
Calhoun opens its season Dec. 11 at home against Ritchie County.
2013-14 CHS Schedule
12/11/13 H RITCHIE COUNTY
12/13/13 A WIRT COUNTY
12/16/13 A HANNAN
12/18/13 H ROANE COUNTY
12/20/13 H BRAXTON COUNTY
01/03/14 A RITCHIE COUNTY
01/10/14 A ROANE COUNTY
01/11/14 H WOOD COUNTY CHRISTIAN
01/15/14 H CLAY COUNTY
01/17/14 H GILMER COUNTY
01/21/14 H HANNAN
01/22/14 H SOUTH HARRISON
01/24/14 A BRAXTON COUNTY
01/29/14 A GILMER COUNTY
01/31/14 H WIRT COUNTY
02/05/14 H DODDRIDGE COUNTY
02/07/14 A SOUTH HARRISON
02/11/14 A WOOD COUNTY CHRISTIAN
02/14/14 A CLAY COUNTY
02/19/14 A DODDRIDGE COUNTY
02/20/14 A LKC GAME