Knights brimming with talent | Boys basketball

Strong senior class leads deep roster
By David Pan | Aug 23, 2018
Photo by: David R Pan King’s Tyler Durbin attempts a layup during a summer league game at Mountlake Terrace High School.

The King’s boys basketball team is about to test the old adage that you can never have too much of a good thing.

The Knights graduated only two players from last season’s squad that finished sixth at the 1A state tournament.

King’s coach Rick Skeen noted that the Knights have two or three players from the junior varsity team who are ready to move up to varsity.

The addition of those players means King’s might have a varsity roster with 14 or 15 players.

“We’ve got a lot of good players,” Skeen said. “We’re trying to figure out what people can do and what places they can play. … We’re really evaluating and trying to figure out who the right group of kids are. It’s a challenge. This is as deep of a group as I’ve ever coached.”

Some of the evaluation of talent took place during the summer when King’s played in four tournaments, a league and then finished up with team camp at Central Washington.

The core of the Knights returns with seniors Elyon Zevenbergen, Luke Bobin, Nate Kleppe and Hunter Reeves.

“You’ve got four seniors who’ve been with us for a long time,” Skeen said. “Between the four kids, they’ve got 12 varsity letters. We’re going to rely on them.”

Other key contributors back are juniors Jaron Hansen and Tyler Durbin and sophomore Shane McGaughey-Fick, who also started at times last season. Other players in the mix include junior Davis Campbell, sophomore Nic Fotopoulis and sophomore Will Pohland.

“We’ve got a lot of kids. That’s a blessing and a curse,” Skeen said. “You have a lot to choose from. But you can’t play 15 kids. It’s a tough choice. You have to find the kids who play hard and play together.

“Our biggest challenge is can we all pull in the same direction? Everybody is going to have to sacrifice a little. A lot of the kids could go other places and get more time and stats. Can we get everybody to buy in? We have the tools and talent to have a really special year.”

Team chemistry is an issue that Skeen noted can become an issue when so many players are looking for court time.

On past teams, sometimes the eighth player on the depth chart was at a JV level and didn’t see much varsity action. King’s likely won’t have that luxury.

“We have 15 kids that can play,” Skeen said. “I’ve never had 15 kids, who could legitimately be playing varsity basketball.

“It’s like trying to figure out a jigsaw puzzle. It’ll be a fun challenge for the coaching staff this year.”

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