SEASON PREVIEW: JAMESTOWN
It appears yet another trying season lies ahead for the Jamestown Muskies. The French Creek Valley Conference team returns four seniors. However, the rest of the squad is composed, mainly, of first-year players, leaving head coach Scott Taylor's bench virtually barren.
"We're going to try to do both jayvee and varsity and hopefully we won't lose anybody along the line," said Taylor.
Although he lists only 12 players on his roster, lack of depth is nothing new to coach Taylor. In the 1998-99 season he had only 11 players to work with. He picked up 13 players for the '99-00 campaign, but it dwindled down to nine by season's end due to injuries, players quitting, and academics. The Muskies finished the '98-99 season at 0-22 and 1-23 in the 99-00 season.
"The bad thing last year was we got our first win the first night of the season and then went 0-23 after that," said Taylor. "I keep reminding our seniors of that. They had a couple of decent scrimmages and I just want them to stay focused on the fact that we aren't a winning team right now and we need to keep working to get better."
Among his starting seniors is David Herdering. Herdering, a 5-10 shooting guard, led the Muskies in scoring last season with 11.6 points per game.
"He's probably the best shooter I've ever coached in my 10 years at Jamestown," Taylor said. "He has the smoothest, most natural shot and he's been able to speed up his release and make himself a very effective shooter."
Taking the center spot for the Muskies will be 6-5 senior Jacob Russell, who has lettered the past two seasons. Hugh McClimans, also a senior, comes in at 6-4 and will claim
the forward spot while small forward Gary Knapp, back after a torn ACL last year, will also start. Knapp's listed as a 6-1 senior.
On point for the Muskies is 5-10 sophomore Justin McClure.
"(McClure) has a little basketball savvy. Of all the guys, I think he's played the most in the off-season. And he played point guard a lot last year as a freshman, so he's familiar with the position," Taylor said.
"The only other one that was even close to lettering last year is Andy Mischick," said Taylor.
Mischick is a 6-1 junior.
"He's going to be asked to pretty much be a back-up for a lot of those guys."
Otherwise, the team consists of three first-year juniors and a pair of rookie sophomores.
"If the other guys can give a needed minute or two, here or there, that would be great," Taylor added.
Assisting Taylor this year will be 1995 Jamestown alumnus Corey Kidwell. -- By Herald writer Pete Chiodo
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