• 37°

FDA will look to seniors to carry team

BY ANDREW EDWARDS

andrew.edwards@greenvilleadvocate.com

We’re just several weeks away from the Nov. 23 start to Fort Dale’s Basketball season with their matchup against Hooper Academy.

Excitement is in the air as the Eagles anticipate improving upon a 4-10 record from last season.

While last season’s team did lose several seniors, there are a handful other veteran players who are ready to take charge. head coach Marshall Watts is eager to see how his new team plays.

“We are excited about the upcoming season. We lost eight seniors from last year’s team, which created an opportunity for others to get a spot. I am pleased to say that we have several new players this year.  The strong point of this year’s team is the seniors. We have three seniors that are great leaders and have the ability to teach the younger guys what the program has been about for decades. They understand we are a defensive team first and know how to work at it.  The seniors know how to set a high bar for the new guys in a positive way.  The team is excited to be in the gym working on fundamentals.  The old saying trust the process is truly in play with these guys. As we spend more time in the gym, the skills will improve as well as defensive assignments and rotations,” Watts said.

Watts made it a point to address seniors Charleston Coker, John Milan Gaston, and Nate Richardson, who he says has been the backbone of the team’s identity.

“They arrive in the gym every day prepared to work hard to improve and expect the same commitment from their teammates. At this point, Charleston will be our go to point guard.  He has been in that role for a while but has the versatility to move to any position that best suits the team. John Milan will be at the three or four position. He has played at both positions during his career and would be willing to do anything necessary for the betterment of the team.  Nate will be a foundation at the low post area. He has played that position for years and really understands how to play and move. All three will be pivotal to our success and growth during the season,” Watts said.

And while the coronavirus is projected to spike even more in the coming months, Watts says as long as his team stays the course and follows guidelines, then the season will continue forward.

“Obviously, the global pandemic has changed many things about sports. There will be hurdles the team will need to overcome. Players being quarantined as a precaution is a strong possibility.  Game day operations will be different.  However, we are like everyone else working with something new and adjusting as needed,” Watts said.