The Van-Far Indians boys basketball team was nearly .500 and had a 6-4 record in the EMO Conference a season ago in spite of being a really young squad.
Van-Far head coach Pat Connaway is looking to how the gained experienced, offseason work, and adjustments this year will help his team reach their goals at the end of the season.
Key returning starters include Josh Hodde, Lathyn McMorris, Brayden Christian, and Sharrod Connor. Connor may miss a majority of the season due to a surgery.
“Basically the plan is to come in and work hard every day, not just in practice,” Connaway said. “We want to compete night in and night out…Our regular season goal is to try and win a conference title. We want to win some hardware in all three of our regular season tournaments we play, and our ultimate goal is to be district champs.”
Key newcomers include Trey Miller, who missed last season with an injury, Caden Wilburn, Treyson Culwell, Parker Wallace, and Dillion Minor.
Most recently, Connaway saw many good things in a Jamboree that kicked off the season.
The Indians scored 32 points in just six minutes against Winfield, beat Louisiana by almost 10 points, and held off Wellsville late to win all three match-ups.
Hodde will run the offense this year and will be leaned on to make key decisions with the offense.
Connaway also hopes to get McMorris more consistently involved in the offense this season.
Most importantly though, Connaway knows his players need to feed the post much better this season to be successful.
“We’ve got to feed the post; we can’t live from the outside,” he said. “If we work from inside out this year we’re going to be a lot better.”
Defensively, the Indians will use their speed and athleticism to pressure opposing teams to create more turnovers and get out on the open floor better.