Under the direction of new head coach, Chris Buckmiller, the Lennox High School boys’ basketball team is ready to begin their 2021-22 season.
Buckmiller coached for five years at Roosevelt High school, five years with South Dakota Attack and one year at Stoughton High School in Wisconsin before coming to Lennox. He looks to help the Orioles improve on last year’s 8-14 record.
The Orioles will be without Peyton Eich, Mason Temme, Gavin Sanculi, and Zach Zirpel all of whom graduated last spring, however, they return four of the five starters from last season with Jackson Arlt, Steven Christion, Ayden Spielman, and Porter Ihnen all returning.
“Our overall speed and athleticism will be our biggest strength this year. We expect to speed teams up and play uncomfortable when they have the ball,” said Buckmiller. “Everything that the boys are learning this year is brand new. However, they have done an incredible job at being fast learners.”
Other members of the Orioles this season include seniors Carter Van Houten, Denver Lefers, and Hunter Gabriel; juniors Jaxon Plank, Braeden Wulf, Conner Eich, and Andrew Daugherty; and sophomores Braxton Musser, Talon Diercks, and Trey Gerdes.
“Entering my first year at Lennox, I couldn’t have asked for a better group of guys. When you come watch us play this year, you will see a team who plays together. I expect a few players to make a huge leap from last year to this year,” said Buckmiller. “A team that believes in themselves is a team who can achieve anything. We BELIEVE. As of now, not many people are talking about the Lennox Orioles, but if we continue the energy that we have had during the first week of practice, we know we will be a scary team to play come March.”
The Orioles will begin their season this Friday, Dec. 10 at home against Sioux Falls Christian. The game is a double header with the LHS girls, Varsity girls are scheduled to tip-off at 6:30 p.m. and the Varsity boys at 8 p.m. The LHS boys will travel to Milbank on Saturday, Dec. 11 and on Thursday, Dec. 16 the Orioles will be back at home taking on Madison in another double header with the LHS girls.
Buckmiller is excited for the season’s start and looks at every team in the State as contenders at this point. He is eager to get the season going and see what the Orioles are made of.
“Part of becoming a great team is learning how to win close games. It’s difficult to truly duplicate game scenarios in practice with the same feelings that come in the moment,” said Buckmiller. But he believes if the team trust in one another they will find a way to win those close games.
Buckmiller is assisted by Kyle Johnston, Jacob Hinker (Junior Varsity coach) and Grant Fodness (C-team coach).