BRANDON, S.D. (KELO) — The Brandon Valley boys and girls basketball teams are the reigning class “AA” champions, and opened practice on Monday, along with the rest of South Dakota.
The Lynx boys advanced to the state tournament for the first time since 2013 last March, and won their first championship in 20 years. Brandon Valley head coach Brent Deckert will attempt to replace eight seniors off last year’s roster with the likes of junior guard Jackson Hilton and 6’9″ senior center Gavin Terhark.
“I like the skill level of our group. We’re way different, I don’t think we’re as athletic as we were last year, but I think our skill level is probably higher than what it was last year. From that aspect, I like where we’re sitting right now. What it’s really going to depend on is how tough we become as the year goes on,” Brent Deckert said.
The Brandon Valley girls are fresh off their first championship since 2011, but have a new head coach in longtime assistant Mike Zerr. Like the boys, the B.V. girls graduated eight players off last year’s roster, though the lack of familiar faces won’t impact the team’s style of play.
“You’re still going to see a team that’s really physical that’s a team that wants to get up and down and play an up-tempo style of basketball. We want to play off the pass and share the basketball, be a balanced offensive team. It’ll be an interesting journey for us to grow and see where that team ends up. We might be a team that some teams want to play early in the season, but hopefully we continue to grow with each game and we’re a team people don’t want to see at the end of the year,” Mike Zerr said.
Brandon Valley opens the regular season December 13th against Rapid City Stevens.