Generals ready for 2013Published 10:42am Thursday, November 21, 2013
It’s like night and day for Horseshoe Bend as the boys’ and girls’ basketball squads enter the 2013-14 season.
On the boys side, it could be a total rebuilding effort as virtually the whole team from last season has graduated.
For the girls, there’s a ton of experience at HBHS boys and girls basketball coach Mike Boyd, although the Lady Generals will have to replace Ranley Clayton, last season’s leading scorer.
As a result of the massive turnover on the boys’ side of things – the Generals lost all of their starters, notably leading scorer Jay Glenn, marksman Cory Glenn and man in the middle Damien Milliner – Boyd said the team would be thrown into the fire pretty quickly.
“It’s going to be a whole new team out there for the boys,” Boyd said. “We don’t have anyone that returned to the team who played any significant time, or started a game for that matter. There’s a few seniors out there, but it’s mostly going to be ninth and 10th graders and a couple of 11th graders.”
Junior Cody Denham and key reserve from last season Kurtis Smothers will be counted on contribute significantly for the Generals this season.
“Everyone is going to have to help a whole lot, really,” Boyd said.
Also expected to see significant time on the court are Clarence Lyons and Antwan Hardnett. Red Lewis is projected to take the reigns at the point goard position. Boyd said the team has worked hard on fine-tuning the little things and creating easier shots, as the team has struggled shooting in practices.
“We’ve been working really hard on the extra pass and getting things wide open,” he said. “We’ve still got a ways to go there, though.”
As for the girls, despite the loss of Clayton, many key contributors from last season’s squad.
Seniors Asia Stowes and Amber Hardnett – last season’s starting shooting and point guard, respectively – are expected to be key players for the Lady Generals this season.
“We’ve got a lot of people coming back that played a whole lot last year,” Boyd said. “I’m expecting a lot from the seniors this season.”
Allison Jones, Danielle Willoughby and Brooke Carr also should be key players for the Lady Generals this season. Boyd said one of the younger girls from last season, Sharee Lyons, has made improvements and is poised to break out.
“She’s improved a lot from last season,” Boyd said. “We have a few younger girls on the team, and the key for them will be getting them in the game and getting them some experience.”
The Generals and Lady Generals start their season at Wadley Thursday night. Boyd said the season opener should be a challenge.
“Both the boys’ and girls’ teams are going to have to shoot better than they have been in practice,” he said. “But it’s hard to tell what we should expect. It’s going to be a feeling out process early on. Wadley’s boys have two or three starters returning so that’s a big advantage for them. They also have had a good girls team for the last several years. We’re going to figure it all out and see what works.”
Horseshoe Bend’s teams will open their home slate on Monday versus Central High School of Coosa County and open area play with a homestand against Randolph County on Tuesday.