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Finally, a chance to see the Philomath boys basketball team.

Because I took some time off after my son's birth, a Gazette-Times sports writer covered for me and wrote a season preview on the team. Then the Warriors had their intrasquad scrimmage on my first day back and I was so buried with work, I wasn't able to make it out to the gym that night.

Marshfield appeared on the schedule for Dec. 2 but then it disappeared. I later found out that the school had requested for it to be postponed because the Pirates had many of the players competing the previous weekend in the Class 4A state championship football game. I've been told it's been rescheduled for Jan. 3.

So, that pushed the opener back to tonight. I've seen some great players go through Philomath in recent years and it's always fun to anticipate who might step out as a leader this year. Nolan Jackson, Kenan Conner and Marshall Brattain all seemed to stand out to me tonight and think they're all in for a great season.

But as is usually the case, it's the rest of the roster that can make the difference between a good season and a great season. Tyler Pfarrer has been a regular on the floor and he was hitting 3-pointers tonight. I think Ethan Manning has great potential to make an immediate impact. Then you have players like Matt Hamilton, Calvin Snuggerud and Toby Stueve that will continue to get better.

It was a frustrating loss for the Warriors against South Albany. The Rebels look like they will be a pretty competitive team in 5A again this season but they were beatable.

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