Oakley High School
Conference: 1AD1 Snake River Conference
Classification: 1A D1
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Head Coach: Travis Noble
Years as Head Coach: 5th Season
Previous Experience: Assistant Coach at Montana State University-Northern (2009-2012)
Record Last Year: 21-5
State Titles: 1962, 1971, 1977 1978
Hewstyn Beck, G, 12
Stockton Robinson, G, 12
Jayden Palmer, G, 11
Maeser Pickett, G/F, 12
Brody Martin, F, 12
Dean Roundy, G, 12
Tate Cranney, F/G, 10
Max Alves, G, 11
Returning Players with Honors:
Hewstyn Beck, First Team All-Conference
Key Players lost from last year:
Jordan Cranney, G, floor general with great leadership
William Wybenga, G, program guy who understood the culture and could help in all aspects of the game
Matthew Pickett, F, strong-tough-physical bruiser who provided toughness
Incoming impact players:
Chandler Jones, G, 9
Joel Nunes, F, 12
Caleb Arnell, G, 9
Written by: Sven Alskog
A 21 win season last year set the bar high for the Oakley Hornets program moving forward. With the group returning this season it is a bar that very well could be reached again or leaped over.
It all gets started from the guard position with senior Hewstyn Beck the unquestioned leader on the floor. Five fellow seniors join Beck to give the Hornets a good level of experience to mix with what aside from them is a fairly youthful group.
Sophomores Tate Cranney and Gannon Critchfield are a couple of athletes who lead the younger Hornets, along with varsity newcomers in freshmen guards Chandler Jones and Caleb Arnell.
With an All-Conference player in Beck leading the way, how the supporting cast performs around him will be one of the keys to how far Oakley can go in the 1AD1 ranks.
"We will need younger players to contribute at key moments throughout the year," said Head Coach Travis Noble. "Getting them up to speed with our system and program is a challenge that this season will present."
Many of the impact players offensively however do have good familiarity with the program, including seniors Stockton Robinson, Maeser Pickett and Brody Martin.
"Well understood system which the athletes know how to play in," said Noble. "Execution, discipline and playing together will be this teams strengths on the offensive end."
He hopes to see an improvement in team free throw shooting and low-post scoring as well.
It's a style of play that should be conducive to another successful season for Oakley.
"Hard-nosed, disciplined, hard working, playing as a 'family', gritty, and tough," said Noble when describing the style of play to expect from his team. "This group understands what type of shots we want on the offensive end. They also understand what type of shot we want to give up on the defensive end. The IQ and understanding of our program will help this group to be competitive."
Noble expects the defense to continue to be a big program strength.
"Tough, hard-nosed group that will play defense as a unit."
In 2015-16 the Hornets only allowed 36.7 points per game.
He is most excited to see how this group carries on the tradition.
"Another opportunity to take a group of athletes and see how far they can progress the Oakley basketball program."
The first opportunity for this bunch of Hornets will be on December 2 against Butte County in the Dietrich Tournament.