Mustangs moving on up in basketball
Last updated 11/27/2023 at 2:35pm
Last year was deemed a rebuilding season for the West Orange-Stark Mustangs in basketball. With several returning Mustangs to the varsity this could be a very good year for boys basketball at West Orange-Stark.
Only one returning Mustang was on the varsity last year. West Orange-Stark had mostly sophomores and juniors making up the lineups on game nights.
Coach Chris Castille of West Orange-Stark believes the Mustangs should be better this year. "With just sophomores and juniors we were building last season. I believe we are going to be way better than what we were because we have the same group coming back. All we've got are two new players on the team so we're building on our foundation and we're going to have a good year," Castille predicted.
The bond between the returning Mustangs on the varsity should be a key component for their success this season. Castille explained, "The chemistry is going to be way better because now they know what to expect from each other, and they know the level on the varsity how fast it is moving which is a lot faster than it was on JV."
Eight varsity players return from last year for West Orange-Stark. They start with junior point guard Jamikael Davis who played extensively as a sophomore. "He's got more experience, got taller, and got better on his handles," Castille described.
Two shooting guards senior Ja'Vaughnte Richard and sophomore Geramicah Davis are back. Castille pronounced, "Geramicah and Richard can shoot the lights out from deep and can score at will."
Supplying defense for the Mustangs are Andrew Cooper, Jamar O'Neal, and Tahj Amerson. "All three are defensive specialists. They can guard opponents on the whole court full court and they can attack the rim to get other teams into foul trouble," Castille insisted.
The starting post for West Orange-Stark will be another returner A'myrian Scott. He should have some help with the rebounding from Denim Orebo who will see more playing time on the varsity this season. Castille added, "Denim is coming off the football field so he's going to help us with getting rebounds."
Joining Scott and Orebo with rebounding is Carter Eglin for the Mustangs. Carter, Denim, and A'myrian are expected to dominate the boards for WOS. They're going to both get the rebounds and they're going to help on the defense according to the coach.
A second newcomer to the Mustang varsity this season who could be a surprise for opponents is Braylen Solomon. Castille will use Solomon as his backup point guard. "Braylen is going to give a lot of energy coming off the bench," Castille stated.
"This is going to be one of our better seasons. A lot of people are going to be shocked at the way we come out. I know how they expect us to follow the way we came out last year, but we're going to be way more organized because the Mustangs understand way more now. They were young in my first year," Castille analyzed.
Because of commitments to the football program at West Orange-Stark the Mustangs did not actually have a basketball game until the third weekend of November. The Mustangs lost to Baytown Lee of Class 5A on November 17 by a score of 63-54 on the road. WOS then defeated Baytown Sterling 50-42 on November 21.
Castille is working eight football players into the mix for the varsity basketball team. Castille observed, "The football players are excited to be back. They're giving their energy and they are 112 percent in, and they understand the assignment, they know what we've got to do to reach our goal this year, so they're all in."
Upcoming action for West Orange-Stark will be the Nederland Tournament during the first weekend in December. The Mustangs will also participate in the Orangefield Tournament the second weekend of December. After Christmas the Mustangs play in Baytown in the Lee Tournament.
"We're looking to compete in all of those tournaments. Those games should get us ready for district," Castille indicated.
The fortunes on the basketball court for the West Orange-Stark Mustangs should be much better this season than last year. "My expectation is for us to do well in district and make it to the playoffs. We will have no excuses on not making the playoffs. That's my motto for this year. The plan is to win a game or two in the post season. We'd love to get to regionals or even state by any means necessary. We hope to be busy all the way to March," Castille concluded.