Poston Butte Boys’ Hoopsters an Experienced Group

2 years ago Andrew Luberda 0

The Poston Butte boys’ basketball team entered the 2017-18 season with 11 seniors among its 15-man roster, including nine returning players. That experience has resulted in a 5 – 0 start, four of those wins in the Thanksgiving Classic, which was hosted by the Broncos Nov. 20-22.

For the first the time since the school opened in 2009, the basketball program is under the direction of someone other than Noel Nafziger, who accepted an administrative position within the Florence Unified School District.

Former varsity assistant and JV head coach Mike Christenson replaced Nafziger and is the beneficiary of a talented group of players, most of whom have been playing together since entering the school four years ago.

“It was a very easy transition,” Christenson told following a recent scrimmage. “I coached most of them as freshmen. It was very seamless and definitely made my job easier.”

Three-year varsity players Kevin Johnson and Logan Hatch, both seniors, are the most experienced, while fellow senior Pierce Anderson was a key contributor a year ago as a junior. All three, along with returning leading scorer Jacob Motley, could account for as many as four seniors in the starting lineup.

“The seniors and the leadership on the team,” Anderson answered when asked what the Broncos’ greatest strength is. “There (are) 11 seniors, a lot of experience from last year carrying over to this year.”

Christenson acknowledged his style of play differs from his former boss, who occasionally preferred the offense to complete a minimum number of passes before shooting.

“Coach Christenson likes to run a little bit more,” said Johnson, a top point guard and Sonoran Region Player of the Year candidate. “We’ve been doing a lot more running in practice and conditioning, getting ready for this season so we can outrun teams.”

The Broncos are going run-and-gun under their new coach. The fewer passes the better, he says.

“We’re going to play fast and we’re going to try to shoot as many shots as possible,” Christenson said. “If we shoot 50 three’s a game, then we shoot 50 three’s a game.”

“It’s definitely going to be a different game than what’s been played here before.”

So far there is no arguing the results.