GOODY, Ky. — Logan High School basketball fans saw a lot of good signs last Saturday night at Belfry (Ky.) as the Wildcats won 79-71 over the host Pirates in a border war preseason game at the Belfry High School gym in Goody, Ky.
Logan has a lot of concerns heading into the 2012-13 basketball season but some of those worries seemed to be answered over the weekend.
Gone, however, is all-state guard and leading scorer Stevie Browning, who averaged 25 points a game last season and now plays collegiately at Fairmont State University.
Another big loss was 6-3 swingman and 3-point specialist Keaton Johnson, who also graduated.
Da’jon Streeter, a 6-4 point guard, who came to Logan from Niagara Falls, N.Y., transferred out to a Las Vegas school.
Yet another key piece of the puzzle, shooting guard Matthew Greene, has also been lost to graduation, along with role player Nigel Wallace.
Still another potential key loss is 6-10 center T.J. Tomblin, who was reportedly hurt at the end of the football season with the Wildcats and might not play, at least for a while. Tomblin is currently not even listed on Logan’s roster but the Logan coaching staff hopes to have him back at some point in the season.
Logan will be undersized but very athletic, led by seniors Trent Dalton, A.J. Reynolds and C.J. Williams and junior Brynden “Worm” Street.
Z. Minnick, a 5-11 sophomore guard, could prove to be one of the team’s top shooters and scorers. Against Belfry, Minnick lit up the scoreboard for 27 points, hitting a pair of early 3-pointers. Minnick logged some varsity court time last season as a freshman.
“It went well,” Logan coach Mark Hatcher said of the preseason game. “It was a good scrimmage. We played four quarters against a team that has been practicing for a while but didn’t have all of their football players. They didn’t have everybody but I thought Belfry played a lot of zone and they zone pressed us. I thought that we did a pretty good job of handling that.”
Hatcher said his team played hard and hit some shots.
“We were very unselfish and I thought that we played real hard the whole game,” he said. “I think this team will do that all year long. We showed a lot of good things. We hit some shots and we had 10 out of 12 guys score, so that we good for us. We ran guys in and out the whole night.”
Logan has one preseason scrimmage left — next Thursday, Dec. 6 at home against Beckley Woodrow Wilson. Tipoff is set for 6 p.m. at Logan’s Willie Akers Arena.
The regular season opener is set for Dec. 11 at home against Hurricane, a Class AAA state tourney contender.
Logan then hosts Berwick, Pa., on Dec. 14. Berwick is led by former Scott High School coach Jason Kingery, who in recent years led the Skyhawks to the state tournament. The Wildcats’ season-opening homestand then concludes with a Dec. 20 contest against Huntington.
The Cats are set to play Belfry for real in late January on the first night of Logan’s annual King Coal Classic.
Logan went 17-9 last season and lost in the first round of the Class AAA state tournament. The Wildcats have reached the state tourney eight times in the last nine seasons under Coach Hatcher, eventually capturing the Class AA state title in 2005 and the 3A state crown in 2010. Logan was the Class AA state runner-ups in 2007.
When the Cats went to the state tourney in 2004 it was their first time to the Big Dance since 1995. Logan has since returned to Charleston every year since under Hatcher except for 2009 when LHS was ousted in the Class AAA tourney, 71-54 to Cabell Midland at the now demolished Veterans Memorial Fieldhouse in Huntington.
Hatcher is entering his 13th season as head coach of the Wildcats.
Only two of his teams have had losing seasons — the 2000-01 squad and the 2002-03 team.
Hatcher’s teams have since enjoyed nine straight winning campaigns.
The Logan High School is now selling season tickets for the 2012-13 boys’ basketball season.
Season tickets are $45 for nine home games. This does not include Logan’s two-day King Coal Classic in January.
For more information call Brenda Baxter at the LHS front office at 304-752-6606.