Wendell High School Team Bio
Head Coach: AJ Kelsey
Years as Head Coach: 3
Previous Experience: 10 years
Record Last Year: 9-14
State Titles: 1
Jysen Lancaster, Jordan Lancaster, Nick Kelsey, Josh Prince, Ethan Chadwick
Tristan Wert, post
Bode French, post
Joe Demasters, post
Zane Kelsey, guard
Zade Swainston, guard
Jacob French, guard
Don Bunn, post
Returning Players with Honors:
All-conference Zane Kelsey
Honorable mention all-conference Joe Demasters
Key Players lost from last year:
Felipe Paniagua, Kaden Kelsey and Hunter Zacarias
Incoming impact players:
Freshman Diego Torres
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Zane Keley, Wendell
Zade Swainston, Wendell
Joe Demasters, Wendell
Tyler Andersen, Declo
Sam Mallory, Declo
2A Canyon Conference Preview
Written by Brandon Hill
Some schools compete in crowded, 10-team conferences, fighting their way through district competition in an attempt to reach the state tournament.
Not Declo and Wendell.
In the two-team 2A Canyon Conference, the Trojans and Hornets combined for 25 wins last year, with the Hornets earning the bid to state before being knocked out in two games to eventual champion North Fremont and consolation champion Bear Lake.
The Hornets will hope to reverse their luck from last season, as head coach Jacody Fox enters his fourth year at the helm.
“We have a good number of returners, but we were senior-heavy last year, so these guys do not have much varsity experience,” Fox said. “We’re excited to see how they grow into this role together.”
Without McKay Breshears, Declo’s undisputed leader from last year, Fox will look to players like senior post Tyler Andersen and senior guard Sam Mallory to serve as floor generals and control an undersized and inexperienced Hornet squad.
“We won’t be as big or as physical as last year, but that’s the only difference I can see at this point,” Fox said.
Fox said his defense will play man-to-man, while a five-out motion offense will make the difference on the other end with an emphasis on tempo.
But just because Declo earned the conference’s trip to state last year doesn’t mean Wendell can’t overtake their rival for a seed.
Third-year head coach AJ Kelsey hopes to elevate his team above their nine wins last season, with the help of all-conference players Zane Kelsey, Zade Swainston and Joe Demasters.
“We have some skilled guards but we need to do better with having an inside game and our defense has to improve,” Kelsey said.
Kelsey pointed to the youth and inexperience of his team as their lone weakness, with the graduation of Felipe Paniagua, Kaden Kelsey and Hunter Zacarias leaving gaping holes in the Trojans’ armor. To help the development of his younger squad, Kelsey called up freshman Diego Torres to contribute at the varsity level, speaking to the young player’s athletic talent.
“Declo has been really dominant in our conference the last few years we hope to make it a little more competitive,” Kelsey said.