The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO


January 3, 2014

Carl Junction boys resume season next week

Carl Junction’s boys basketball team has gone back to work in preparation for the resumption of its season next week.

In six games before the holiday break, the Bulldogs were 3-3, which gave head coach Kyle Williams an opportunity to evaluate how the Bulldogs match up against different types of opponents.

In their last game before a nearly three-week break, Carl Junction lost to St. Mary’s-Colgan 63-54 at Pittsburg.

“Over Christmas break, we’ve spent a lot of time working on us,” Williams said. “We had a couple of bad losses. At Colgan, we shot 30 percent. We forced 22 turnovers, but had opportunities we just gave away.”

Carl Junction has victories against Siloam Springs (Ark.), Nevada and Parsons, offset by losses — all on the road — to Parkview, Hillcrest and Colgan.

The Bulldogs’ season resumes with a key matchup against Webb City on Tuesday at Carl Junction in a game that will have implications for district tournament seedings.

The Class 4, District 12 tournament, which will be at Carl Junction, has just one Big 8 Conference opponent — Monett — in the field. The other schools are Carthage, McDonald County, Nevada and Webb City.

The Bulldogs begin Big 8 play against Cassville on Jan. 10 at Carl Junction. Four of the Bulldogs’ seven conference games will be at home.

“We would like to have Mount Vernon and Aurora at home as well,” Williams said. “Those are two places that are really tough to play.”

In preparation for the conference race and, ultimately, the district tournament, Williams said he has chosen to utilize more of his team’s height.

“We can play multiple styles,” Williams said. “We’ve developed a solid rotation of eight or nine guys over the break.

“We’re going to use our size more after the break,” he said. “Braydon Allen (6-foot-6 sophomore), we’ve brought him up from the junior varsity. He will play a lot of varsity minutes. We can go small if we need to.”

Allen will join a Carl Junction front line that includes Aaron Nelson, a 6-6 junior; Elijah Everitt, a 6-6 junior, and Chase Johnston, a 6-4 junior.

The Bulldogs have depth in the backcourt as well with 6-1 seniors Matt Magee and Dustin Satterlee along with 6-1 juniors Cody Vogt and Logan Jolly and 6-4 senior Gaige Crockett.

“In our first six games, five teams have played nothing but zone defense against us,” Williams said. “We have kind of picked up a trend.

“I think our conference is more competitive this year than in the last couple of years,” he said. “It’s a lot more spread out. This year, you’re going to have to play well on any given night. I’ve talked to other coaches and they all see the conference as being very competitive.”

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