Hey Warriors fans, today is Thursday, Jan. 9.
The Philomath High boys basketball team feels ready for the “second season” — Oregon West Conference action.
The Warriors, ranked No. 6 in the latest OSAAtoday coaches’ poll released Tuesday, will enter Friday night’s game at Stayton with a record of 8-2. Philomaths lone setbacks came to defending champion Banks and Class 5A Willamette.
“I think if we maintain our energy level and continue with (what we’re doing on) our defensive side and just continue to be patient on the offensive end and get the right looks, I think we have a good shot of going through league and doing some damage,” Philomath junior Michael Lundy said after Philomath’s 72-41 win this past Friday.
Freshman Ty May, who plays and interviews like an upperclassman, has confidence as well.
“I feel like we’re ready,” May said. “We had a really good preseason — we lost to Banks and we probably shouldn’t have. We shot 1 for 20 in the first half; you can’t win a game shooting 1 for 20.”
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Philomath, ranked No. 5 by the OSAA as of Tuesday night, actually will play one more nonconference game with a Jan. 24 trip up to Tillamook.
As for the conference, it should be interesting to see how it all unfolds. Cascade looks like the favorite heading in with the No. 1 ranking in the coaches poll (but No. 7 in the OSAA power rankings). The Cougars and Warriors will meet up at Cascade on Jan. 17.
Sweet Home also looks pretty good so far, Woodburn should be in the mix and don’t forget about Stayton. This Friday home opener should be a pretty good test.
Five of the top 10 teams in the OSAA power rankings are from the Oregon West. I know it’s early, but that’s an indication of the quality we’re seeing in the league this season.
By the way, in an interesting twist with the schedule, all of Philomath’s road games from here on out fall on Friday nights and all home games are on Tuesdays.
Thanks for reading and I’ll see you at the next game.
— Brad Fuqua, Philomath Express