By Marcus Hopper, Staff Writer
The Armstrong Pirate basketball season is upon us once again. The men’s basketball team’s first official game is Saturday, Nov. 14, against Anderson College as part of the PBC-SAC challenge.
Head Coach Evans Davis and his staff have worked extremely hard to recruit great players for the team, and they’ve succeeded. Armstrong has nine new players on the team along with seven returning players.
Junior center Daniel Berndt is one of the new players and he knows that each player will play a key role in the team’s success.
“Each player can contribute on the court and help us win. Whether it is rebounding, scoring or blocking shots, we all can help this team win in some type of way.”
The Pirates played two exhibition games this preseason and though they lost, they showed tremendous fight.
“It is still early in the year,” junior point guard Jamison Jeffers said. “We have a whole new team and we are still getting used to each other but we expect to be in the championship this year in our conference. We have depth this year and we play for each other. We all have one common goal and that is to win.”
Zach Corliss, a Pirate from 2008-2011, spent his last two seasons as a graduate assistant under Coach Davis and is now beginning his first season as a full-time assistant coach for the team.
“I am encouraged by our team as individuals and as a whole at this point early in our season,” Corliss said. “I think this is the most talented team we have had in my years at Armstrong and truly believe we have a chance to shake up the Peach Belt Conference. A lot of our success will be determined by our eight seniors. We will go as far as they take us.”
After a 6-19 season in Davis’s second year as coach, the Pirates are hoping to turn things around and open up the new season in a big way. The rebuild begins now and they hope to start it in the right way.