11/19/2013 10:42:00 AM Williams Vikings basketball team opens season Nov. 26 at home
Williams guard Colton Grantham makes a pass in the Vikings’ 63-50 loss to the Canyon State Rams in the second round of the state playoffs last season at Tim’s Toyota Center in Prescott Valley. Photo/Les Stukenberg
With a new head coach at the helm, the Williams High School Vikings boys basketball team started practicing Nov. 4 for their upcoming season.
Rico Dunn, Williams Unified School District's K-12 art teacher, comes to Williams after coaching at Window Rock last year.
"I'm looking forward to a great season," Dunn said. "I've been around this game my entire life. My dad coached high school basketball in Montana for about 40 years. I'm excited for this opportunity and looking forward to kind of turning things around from what I hear they were last year."
About 15 boys are in the basketball program this year, with 11 returning players.
"We've got some athletic kids that are going to probably excel in what we plan on doing," Dunn said.
Key returners to the Vikings roster include Colton Grantham, Christian Plascencia, Austin Kennelly, Leo Lopez and Andrew Karlsberger.
"I'm expecting them to progress throughout the season and be leaders for the younger players, as well as start to ask the questions on why we're doing certain things at certain times so that they don't just play within the system, they understand the system," Dunn said.
Dunn's defensive strategy for the team is to play aggressively, switch up defenses to keep opponents guessing and prevent opponents from getting in a groove.
As for the offense, Dunn said he hopes the team can keep their opponents moving, take advantage of lapses in defensive play, reverse the ball a lot and shoot high percentage shots.
"Our main goal is to be a disciplined team and understand the system," Dunn said. "And we're hoping if we can achieve those two goals that winning will come along with it."
The Vikings will play a scrimmage at Mayer tomorrow at 6 p.m. They open regular season play at home on Nov. 26 against Camp Verde. The junior varsity team takes the court at 4 p.m. and varsity plays at 7 p.m.