Though the season started on a low point for the Maryville boys basketball team after a 58-40 defeat at the hands of Jefferson High School, with a few new key editions the year resets to 0-0.
The Spoofhound team is ready for a new look from some familiar faces as the football team brings over some of the team’s biggest assets.
Entering into the first matchup of the year against Jefferson Conception High School, the Spoofhounds were held back by a handicap. Returning starters senior Eli Dowis, senior Tyler Houchin and junior Tate Oglesby spent time away from the court and positioned themselves in a Spoofhound football postseason run.
Now with three of the most influential players on the court back in action, Maryville basketball is ready to pursue its own postseason run on the hardwood.
“Our goal for this season is to play the best kind of basketball we can throughout the whole season,” Oglesby said. “That is our goal, to play 30 games which would send us to state.”
The Spoofhounds proved their need for growth in their first venture out on the court against the competition. Maryville took on Jefferson and was overwhelmed by the Eagles. Jefferson used the hole in the starting rotation to their advantage as they dominated in the second and third quarter with a 25-3 run.
In a matter of days, the Spoofhounds lineup transformed back to the deadly attack that pushed them to the MSHSAA Class 3 State quarterfinals last year.
With so many early exits in recent memory for Maryville, the goal that the seniors have is simple in theory, but they know that hard work is a must to accomplish the feat.
“I plan on leading by setting a standard and bringing my teammates up to match my energy and intensity,” Dowis said. “Our goal is to make it to state.”
After months of playing on grass and turf and tossing around the pigskin, the transition to the hardwood may seem difficult to some. For the Spoofhound multisport athletes, it is just another time of the year, as the starters have been doing this for three or four years.
“There really isn’t too much of a transition because in both sports I play aggressive and use my physicality,” Dowis said. “The only change is the shape of the ball.”
One thing that these three veterans bring to the table that trumps all their athletic prowess is their abilities to lead the team. With years of experience and knowledge of how the postseason runs in both basketball and football, the ability to stay calm in pressure situations is a key to the ultimate plan in mind.
That plan is to win the big one, and with it being some of the guys last year, the leadership quality is essential to success.
“I plan on encouraging and supporting everybody throughout the whole season,” Oglesby said. “As a team, we just have to do our part in every game and make the most of the opportunity that we have.”
The Spoofhounds earned a 62-39 win over Chillicothe in the first round of the Savannah Invitational.