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DUGGER -- The Union High School boys basketball coach is looking for a few good young men, Bulldogs that can put the ball in the basket.
Especially after the loss of Tyler Talpas, who finished his career with 1,160 points, 32nd best in the history of area boys basketball.
"Obviously we lost a lot of scoring in Tyler and a really good defender in Seth Gambill," said second-year UHS coach Chip Langley, who's Bulldogs had a 4-18 season a year ago. "We would have games where only three kids scored.
"We are not going to be able to succeed like that. We will have to have five, six or seven different players contribute offensively for us."
Ethan Fettig, a 6-4 senior, averaged 11.4 points per game, second on the team and was tops in rebounding. He will again give the Bulldogs a solid presence in the post.
"Ethan has gotten stronger," said Langley. "He also has better footwork.
"He is a productive scorer and a good rebounder. He is a good defender and a very versatile player. He can make plays both in the paint and on the perimeter. He is going to have to be one of our go-to guys this year."
Zac Birdsong returns with a year of experience at guard. The 5-11 senior averaged 4.6 points per game in 2011-12.
"Zac has a nice shot from the perimeter," said Langley. "He is a 3-point threat.
"He is quick and can get to the basket. He is very capable of having a really good season. We are going to need our experienced players to lead us this year."
Ian Hamburg, the lone junior on the entire 15-man roster, is a returning letterman. He is a 6-4 forward who averaged over seven points per game a year after transferring to UHS.
"Ian did a great job in the off-season," said Langley. "His shot has improved and his footwork as well.
"He can hit the boards as well as score for us. He has a great wing span, which should aid him in becoming a better defender and coming up with some steals. He is going to see a lot of the floor this year and we are expecting good things from him."
Senior Sterling Langley, the coach's son, is another returning varsity letterman.
"Sterling is going to play at the point guard for us," said his father. "He has pretty good quickness and will have to do a good job of taking care of the ball and running the offense.
"I would like to see him set the tone for us. He has the ability to get in the lane and find easy opportunities for his teammates."
Austin Robertson will be making the move from junior varsity to varsity.
"Austin has grown a couple of inches and now is 6-7," Langley said of the sophomore. "His game has also grown.
"He has worked really hard this summer and you can see the improvement he has made. He has improved as a ball handler and has gotten stronger. Austin is a very coachable kid who has the ability to be a strong contributor for us this season.
"He is a good shooter, but just needs some varsity experience."
Trey Bedwell, the other sophomore on the seven-man varsity roster, is a 6-1 forward.
"Trey is playing on the varsity level for the first time," said Langley. "He has worked really hard.
"His is a very coachable kid. He is going to help us off the bench this year."
Senior Darrell Faulkner is a 5-10 guard who has not played basketball recently.
"He is good athlete as he showed on the football field," coach Langley said of Faulkner. "He is a strong, physical kid that has a chance to help us off the bench this season.
"He is very athletic and very, very quick. He has a good first step which should help him both offensively and defensively."
Langley said he hopes to be more versatile defensively.
"Last year, we played a lot of 2-3 zone," he said. "We want to mix that up more this year depending on the opposition.
"Despite having a lot of size, which should help us defensively, we have a lot of quickness. People might not think we are that quick because of our size, but I think we can get up and down the floor more this year."
Langley said their goals are to win every race down the floor, limit opponents to one shot and play with a lot of mental toughness and with high intensity.
"If we can do those things, we have a chance to be pretty successful," said Langley. "We have added Owen Valley and Evansville Day School to our schedule while dropping out of the Springs Valley tournament and New Harmony closed.
"We are looking forward to getting the season started and seeing how things work out for us."
The Bulldogs will host Bloomfield Wednesday in the season-opener for both teams.
|Nov. 21||Bloomfield||6 p.m.|
|Nov. 27||at North Knox||6 p.m.|
|Nov. 30||Clay City||6 p.m.|
|Dec. 1||Eminence||6 p.m.|
|Dec. 8||Shakamak||6 p.m.|
|Dec. 11||at Hutsonville-Palestine (Ill.)||8:00 p.m.|
|Dec. 14||at Eastern Greene||6 p.m.|
|Dec. 19||North Vermillion||6 p.m.|
|Jan. 2||Greene County Invitational||TBA|
|Jan. 3||Greene County Invitational||TBA|
|Jan. 4||Greene County Invitational||TBA|
|Jan. 5||Greene County Invitational||TBA|
|Jan. 12||at Evansville Day||3:30 p.m.|
|Jan. 19||at Wood Memorial||6 p.m.|
|Jan. 22||at Linton-Stockton||6 p.m.|
|Jan. 25||Shoals||6 p.m.|
|Jan. 26||Owen Valley||6 p.m.|
|Feb. 1||at North Central||6 p.m.|
|Feb. 2||at Riverton Parke||6 p.m.|
|Feb. 7||North Daviess||6 p.m.|
|Feb. 15||Sullivan||6 p.m.|
|Feb. 16||at White River Valley||6 p.m.|
Greene County Invitational at WRV
UNION BOYS BASKETBALL
JUNIOR VARSITY ROSTER
Coach: Chip Langley (4-18, one season)
Assistant coach: Clay Smith.