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Falcon boys' basketball preview
RUMFORD -- It has been said that change is good and that is what the message will be surrounding the Mountain Valley boys' basketball program as it has been preparing for the upcoming season.
The Falcons will be under the direction of new coach Tom Danylik, who will be entering into his first varsity position. It will be a challenge for both Danylik and the players to get on the same page.
The team hovered in the middle of the pack in the Mountain Valley Conference last season and qualified for the Class B playoffs. It ended with a loss to Poland in the preliminary round, but they have several returning lettermen who could make a difference.
The trio of Jacob Theriault, Ryan Nicols and Milo Jodrey played major roles on last year's team and are going to be asked to do the same this year.
Sean Murphy, Scott Nicols and Colin Merrill are looking to increase their roles greatly.
The points of emphasis during the preseason have been instilling the philosophy of playing great defense first and creating turnovers, which allows the team to get out and run.
"We must rebound the ball with authority on both ends of the floor every game," said Danylik. "Our strengths are going to be our athleticism and leadership."
After a handful of practices, the Falcons loss to Edward Little and Leavitt in a post Thanksgiving tip-off tournament.
The presence of players coming back this year after being away from the program will add depth. Adam Volkernick, Ryan Stickney and Will Cunningham are poised to have a great impact on this team.
"These seniors have been playing basketball together for a long time," said Danylik. "They believe in their team and know that they must stick together and support each other if they want to be successful."
A contribution is anticipated by Dominic Haines, who transferred from Telstar. Haines was a starter on the football team. The sophomore trio of Tom Marshall, Brad Marshall and Caleb Gauvin will be vying to contribute and record significant minutes.
The team graduated Zack Radcliffe (Maine Maritime Academy) and Andrew Child from last year's team.
"We are going to treat every game we play the same. We need to bring intensity, desire, hustle and a maximum effort to each and every game we play," said Danylik.