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Boys baksetball hopes to go back to playoffs

By November 17, 2010

Enterprise staff writer

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This will be coach Dan Gonzalez\’s 11th season at the helm of the Davis High boys

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basketball program. As he comes off his best season ever, he knows his guys won\’t be sneaking up on anybody this winter.

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Carving out a 15-12 mark, a third-place Delta Valley Conference finish and a trip to the playoffs, the Blue Devils bring only four veterans back to a deep-but-unproven 15-man roster.

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Swingman Tim Mohr is expected to be the team\’s offensive life\’s blood, while guard Graham McDaniel will be asked to be the general and first man back on defense. Inside, Bryce Thompson and Tyler Delaugher also return. Delaugher started most of the winter and Thompson came on strong near the end. Both Mohr and Graham were first-team All-DVC performers last year.

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Gonzalez hopes his players, through the Davis Hoops Wildcats off-season program, did some toughening up between its first-round blowout playoff loss at Rodriguez and what will be the school\’s winter tip-off versus Vacaville on Nov. 29.

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“We went to the Las Vegas Tournament … and did very well,” Gonzalez explained of team\’s big summer test. “And this year we\’re going to MaxPreps Holiday Classic Tournament in Torrey Pines.”

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Gonzalez and assistant coach George Sousa noted after the Rodriguez loss that the Devils weren\’t prepared for the playoffs\’ ultra-physical nature.

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Games with Woodland (Dec. 7), Pioneer (Dec. 14) and other tourneys in Dixon and Napa should have the locals battle-ready when DVC play commences on Jan. 12 against newcomer Grant.

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Valley (16-12, 4-8 in 2009-10) and Kennedy (10-17, 6-6) have been replaced in conference by Grant (16-10, 5-5 in the Metro League) and Monterey Trail (13-14, 4-6 in Delta River League play).

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The DVC schedule features DHS home games against Laguna Creek (Jan. 14), Elk Grove (Jan. 28), Monterey Trail (Feb. 11) and Franklin (Feb. 15).

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Other Blue Devil roster members include Elvis Bikoba, Brandon Hassid, Tyler Sousa, Bryan Hensley, Kristian Mackewicz, Jacques Gatlin, Zach Powers, Ilanko Nataraajan, Jack Yoder and Kevin Sorensen. Gatlin is a 5-foot-9 guard who recently moved to Davis from Chicago.

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“This roster is more than just basketball,” Gonzalez says. “These are good kids, who contribute, each in their own way.”

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Notes: Besides Sousa, former Dixon coach Jean Gelpi assists Gonzalez with the varsity squad. At the JV level, Bob Silva returns with help from Steve Sousa, longtime area youth coach Bruce Berry and Hall of Fame University of Redlands ex-player and coach Gary Smith. Dino Clark, an employee at Harper Junior High, takes over the freshmen with help from Demond Huff and Jamal McLaurin. … DHS will sport new uniforms this winter. … Former Blue Devils Peter Smith and Kevin Monell have chosen not to play basketball this year.

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— Reach Bruce Gallaudet at [email protected] or (530) 747-8056. Comment on this story at www.davisenterprise.com

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