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Cougar boys' basketball preview
DIXFIELD -- There will be some differences when the Dirigo boys varsity basketball team hits the hardwood because of the turnover of personnel. However, everyone can expect to see the same type of hard work and high intensity level.
The Cougars' new look will be quite evident with three lettermen returning from the 2012 team that won over 20 games and beat Lee Academy in the Class C State Championship game. This will require an adjustment by all those involved to rekindle the success.
They bring back senior guards Travis Frost (5-10) and Hunter Ross (5-7), who played a lot of minutes last year and will be counted on to provide leadership on the current roster.
"We are a young team that will have to find our identity," said coach Travis Magnusson, entering his second season. "We will be able to compete with any team in the conference, but there are going to be a lot of close games in the MVC this season as well."
One player who saw limited time was Robbie Babb, a 6-2 senior forward who will need to make his presence known in the paint. The Cougars inside game will receive help from forwards Dylan Kidder (junior, 5-11) and Kaine Hutchins (sophomore, 6-1).
Adding depth in the backcourt will be Chad Snowman (sr., 5-10) and Tyler Frost (so., 5-9).
"We could have a lot of different scorers," said Magnusson, alluding to offensive execution. "But the key will be consistency."
Dirigo also had the top J.V team in the league last year and the quicker the reserves adjust to varsity level, the better the team will be. Key newcomers are forwards Isiah Brown (jr., 6-2); Nick St Germain (so., 6-3) and Clay Swett (fr.,6-2). The talented freshmen class also has guards Riley Robinson, (6-0) and Gavin Arsenault (5-11).
The graduation of seven seniors has left plenty of holes and roles to fill. They included Cody St. Germain (center), Caleb Turner (guard), Ben Holmes (forward), Josh Turbide (guard), Mitchell Stanley (forward), Jake Dowland (forward) and Nick Blodgett.
"We need to push the ball," said Magnusson. "Play pressure defense and rebound well."
The Cougars will need to be focused and ready every game against Mountain Valley, Spruce Mountain, Boothbay, Hall-Dale, Madison and Monmouth.