At the close of the first half, it looked like the visiting Yellowjackets of Eldred were headed for their first victory in a year in a varsity game of hoops.
LAKE HUNTINGTON, NY — At the close of the first half, it looked like the visiting Yellowjackets of Eldred were headed for their first victory in a year in a varsity game of hoops. They went 0-14 last season.
On December 14, they tied the home team Sullivan West Bulldogs 9-9 in the opening period, and then outposted them 14-8 in the second frame to take a 23-17 lead into the locker room at the half.
But then like a pale rider in an approaching storm, the Dawgs rallied to outscore the Jackets in the remaining two periods (10-5, 11-6), recording a 38-34 victory. It was aided in large measure by Jacob Hubert’s performance at the free-throw line, as he sunk several one-pointers while the game clock ticked away, effectively putting put the contest out of reach.
“That’s his job in that situation,” commented the Bulldogs’ veteran boys’ basketball coach John Meyer about Hubert’s shooting ability at the foul line.
Bill Furler, coach of the Yellowjackets (0-1), is coming off a winless season last year. “We got blown out every single game,” he said, but he hopes things will be on the upswing this season. “So it’s really up to us. They fought their butts off, but Sullivan West took off in the second half.”
This year, Eldred takes to the hardwood with three seniors, two of whom are starters (Frankie Whitmore and Sean Furler, a captain), and three freshmen—captain Trey Kaufmann, Eli Gonzalez and James Deyermond.
Eldred’s goals for the season?
“To be better than last year,” replied Furler. “I’m super proud of the boys… we’re rebuilding with three freshmen [starters], and you can only go up.”
According to Meyer, the Bulldogs’ coach, Sullivan West (2-4) is essentially in the same boat. They have two seniors (captains Andrew Hubert and Jaymes Buddenhagen), and only “three guys with varsity experience… We just don’t have the numbers.”
He put a positive spin on the situation. Of the unfolding season, Coach Meyer said, “We’re going to light up the scoreboard; we have to take the opportunities. Everybody’s got to contribute. We’re going to fight every game. It’s a crapshoot on high school basketball… When we play well, we’re going to be very competitive. When we don’t do the little things, we’re going to struggle… We have to have a balanced attack.”
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