DE SMET, S.D. (KELO) — After winning their first title since 1999 the De Smet boys basketball team enters the new season with most of its championship roster back and will look to continue their reign over Class B.

The De Smet boys basketball team enters the new season fresh off a Class B state championship a season ago

“Probably the best time of my life honestly. I’ll tell everybody about it when I get older, it’s just something special to you in your life that you get to win a state championship with some of your best buds and it’ll last for a life time,” Kalen Garry said.

With starters Ethan McCune and Cody Cavanaugh gone to graduation, There’ll be new faces in the starting lineup, including junior Damon Wilkinson

“He’s about to 6’9 now, had a really summer and played great in the state tournament. So, it’ll be nice to get him on the floor and be able to have some size this season,” Head coach Jeff Gruenhagen said.

The Guard unit will be a strength of this years De Smet squad with Rhett Osthus leading the way defensively

“He’s a guy, we give him an assignment and he just ties people down and plays with so much energy and he’s a great scorer. A couple games Kalen didn’t play in last year Rhett was the guy right there with 25 points. He’s hit some really big shots for us, he just doesn’t have all the attempts for us right now,” Jeff Gruenhagen.

And that’s because the offense flows through one of the best scoring guards in the state, putting up 23 Points per game a season ago, Kalen Garry.

“He draws a lot of defense, a lot of defenders but he just keeps on working. That’s the fun part is he just keeps working to get open, keeps moving, keeps moving. He’ll get that rebound, he’ll get that tip in. If someone is trying to keep the ball from him it doesn’t really bother him that much because he’s going to find a way to get his hands on the ball,” Gruenhagen said.

With the Bulldogs entering as one of the favorites, they understand it comes with a target on their backs.

“We’ve been fortunate to be at the top but you know you’re getting everyone’s best game regardless of Class ‘A’ Class ‘B’ everyone wants to knock you off,” Gruenhagen said.

De Smet opens its season on Friday at Deubrook Area.