GOSHEN — Familiar faces are back on the sidelines for the Goshen High School boys basketball team.
Unfortunately, on the court that won't be the case.
The RedHawks lost four starters from last year's team, which finished 8-15.
Bryant Robinson heads the list of players lost to graduation.
Robinson, who led the team in scoring (16.6) and rebounding (6.3) last year, finished as the school's 14th all-time leading scorer.
"He was a kid who wanted the ball and was willing to take shots," said Goshen coach Michael Wohlford about Robinson. "We're losing a lot of production and a highly competitive kid who won't be easy to replace.
"Kids as a collective unit this year have to step up and except their roles. I think they're ready to do that. It's just a matter of proving themselves in their roles."
More responsibility will fall this year on the shoulders of sophomore Drew Hogan, who is the lone returning starter. Hogan, who averaged five points a game a year ago, led the team in minutes played last season as a freshman.
"I look for him to score more this year and be a little bit more assertive offensively," Wohlford said of Hogan. "He has the ability to score. He was a high scorer as a middle school player and he's played travel ball."
In the mix to contribute this year are Jarah Byler, Zack Barker, Quinn Bechtel, Blak Wiess, Ryan Harmelink, Zane Barker, Tommy Cartagena Garcia, Deecon Hill and Anders Revoir.
"Byler has sneaky athleticism and is powerful," Wohlford said. "Zack Barker is a 6-5 wing player that can provide outside shooting. "Quinn Bechtel is the son of former Goshen coach Brian Bechtel. He's a 5-11 guard who we hope takes some of the ball-handling burden off of Drew. He's physically ready for the varsity season. Blak Wiess is a left-handed interior player who has looked good in practice. Ryan Harmelink can shoot the ball. He's probably our best shooter. Zane Barker is 6-6 who is very rangy with long arms. Zane can block shots, rebound and defend. Hill has shown in practice that he can be a scorer."
Wohlford wants his team to take better care of the basketball this season.
"We had a disappointing record last year because we had too many turnovers," Wohlford said. "We averaged 13 turnovers a game. We averaged under nine in previous years. We've talked about taking better care of the basketball and making the simple play. With multiple ball-handlers this year we feel we can do that. We have people to spell Drew this year and help him stay fresh."
Back helping the program as assistant coaches are Kris Davis and Jeremy McLaughlin. Wohlford worked with the two in past years as part of the Goshen boys basketball program.
Davis returns after spending one year as the varsity boys basketball coach at New Prairie.
"It's a huge boost to us to have (Davis) back," Wohlford said. "Jeremy McLaughlin worked under Brian Bechtel and worked for me for one year. I got back some good friends. We kind of got the band back together as a coaching staff. There's chemistry, trust and camaraderie as a staff. I"m comfortable as a coach to have that. I feel our staff will help improve our young and talented roster."
Wohlford sees many challenging nights ahead when it comes to Northern Lakes Conference games.
"It's a highly competitive league that's well scouted," the Goshen coach said. "I would say that Northridge is the favorite. Alex Stauffer is a difficult assignment for a defense. He can make shots from 22-feet and in. Carter Stoltzfus is a really quick point guard. I would say that NorthWood will have a very good team. They will have very good guard play. Warsaw is always up there and they have a lot back. Those teams can also get knocked off by the rest of the bunch.
"Our goal is to finish in the top half of the league. We have inexperience in terms of varsity play, but our players are catching up fast."
Tommy Cartagena Garcia`5-11`Sr
Coach: Michael Wohlford, fourth year