Chugiak boys basketball full of new blood
Chugiak’s boys basketball team has several fresh faces this season.
Just three returners are back for the Mustangs — Skyler Fullmer, Payton Fullmer and Roger Jorgensen. And of those three, only the Fullmer cousins saw significant playing time last season.
But that hasn’t dampened the spirits of head coach Kevin Fullmer.
“They’re great guys,” he said. “They have good attitudes. They want to try to learn.”
The new blood also means starting positions are up for grabs, coach Fullmer said.
“It will be a really great opportunity for other kids to develop into a varsity role,” he said.
Lacking size, conditioning and defensive rebounding position will be key for the Mustangs this season, coach Fullmer said.
“We have to block out, be in good shape and be strong,” he said.
Solid defense will also be essential, Skyler Fullmer said.
“We’ll definitely have to play good defense and execute our offensive plays,” he said.
The Mustangs want to finish better than .500, Skyler Fullmer said.
“I’m hoping we’ll have a winning season and go to state,” he state.
Last season, coach Fullmer returned to the program after a two-year hiatus, during which he helped his brother, Greg, win a Class 4A title at Bartlett.
Despite finishing dead last in the Cook Inlet Conference in the 2011-12 campaign, Chugiak was a much-improved team from the beginning of the season to the end, coach Fullmer said.
“Last year was a growing year,” he said. “Our basketball IQ wasn’t as high as it should have been.”
But, he said, by the end of the season, it was.
“It takes time to develop,” coach Fullmer said.
Coach Fullmer said he’s hoping to see the same improvement in his team this season and have the squad peak in time for the conference tournament.
“We want to get better every game,” he said.
He’s already seen rapid development, coach Fullmer said.
“They learn fast,” he said.
Increased interest in the sport is essential for Chugiak to build its program, coach Fullmer said.
“We need more full-time players,” he said.
Chugiak opened its season with a 61-43 loss to Palmer on Saturday, Dec. 8. The Moose gained a 15-2 advantage after one quarter and never looked back.
Skyler Fullmer paced the Mustangs with 13 points. Jake Brownlee (11 points) and Payton Fullmer (10) also reached double digits for Chugiak.
Chugiak next plays Dec. 27 at the Doc Larson Tournament in Wasilla.