Young Patriots look to build from solid season
BENNINGTON — In his third year leading the Patriots, Mount Anthony coach Marcus Hass wants his team to build off of a solid season and a playoff victory.
The Patriots were 13-9 last season, reaching the quarterfinals in Division I after beating Burlington in the playdowns.
"It's nice to have around that have been there and as far as some of the younger guys that have been around for a little while, they know what I want to get done," Hass said.
Hass only has three seniors, but two of them — Brandon Anderson and Abe Amidon — have been on varsity for a combined six years.
"Brandon knows the system and what I want to do, he's somebody who knows if he does the wrong thing, he knows it before I do," Hass said. "He leads the other guys into battle and I can count on him to keep his head and play a full game for us."
Amidon, on the other hand, was the team's leading scorer last season and enters his third year for the Patriots.
"Abe's been filling it up since he was a sophomore and I think he'll continue to do that. We have a lot of offensive weapons on the floor this year," Hass said.
Another player who figures to flood the scoresheet is sophomore Gavin Johnson, who put up about seven points per game as a freshman. But there were flashes, including a 22-point output against Burr and Burton near the end of the year.
"We're a feed-the-hot-hand type of team, we have guys that can fill it up if we need them to," Hass said. "Gavin's grown up a lot from last year to this year in terms of shot selection and his play."
Hass said he has more depth this year, giving him the ability to play 8 or 9 deep in his lineup.
"It's good because I have guys to fill roles," Hass said. "They might not play a lot of minutes, but they'll be valuable minutes."
There's a handful of new faces, including sophomore Danarius Davis and junior Zapree Pelzer, who come in new to the district, and JV call-ups, including sophomore Chase Gosselin and freshman Austin Grogan. All of them can make an opposing coach tear their hair out trying to defend.
"The best thing about this group, they are the closest in terms of camaraderie that I've had so far," Hass said. "The guys [on the bench are] up every time when a guy [is subbed out] and that makes it easier for guys to feel comfortable stepping into new roles."
Another new face to the court, but not to Mount Anthony sports fans is Jeff Potter. The senior, a perennial all-star in soccer and lacrosse, decided to play basketball this winter and Hass was pleased that he did.
"He's just an athlete, and wanted to come out and play. He's been good for us so far," Hass said.
Hass said the ultimate goal is to reach Patrick Gym for the Final Four.
"We haven't been there yet, but if we continue to build from last year and if we can get two home playoff games, we'll be where we want to be," Hass said.
Roster: Brandon Anderson, Gavin Johnson, Danarius Davis, Abe Amidon, Asa Burrows-Crane, Quintin McIntire, Jon McDonald, Owen Maroney, Jeff Potter, Austin Grogan, Chase Gosselin, Zapree Pelzer, Hayden King, Josh Peters, Andrew Steadman.
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