Beallsville Ready to Start Competing

By RICK THORP

BEALLSVILLE — With mostly freshmen on his roster last season, Beallsville coach Rick Jarrett knew there’d be a steep learning curve.

The Blue Devils struggled to a 6-16 record but, along the journey, paved the way for what Jarrett believes is a very promising future.

“We’re performing better right now then we did last year,” Jarrett said assessing his squad’s scrimmages. “So, that’s a plus.

“I told them they had to grow up fast last year. There was no time to wait around. They had to get in there and get after it.”

The Blue Devils did just that and, as a result, put themselves in a position to be quite successful going forward.

“This year, we’re listening a little more, trusting each other a little more, being more patient and working the ball around better.”

Better “team ball” is how Jarrett, a veteran in Beallsville coaching circles, phrased it.

“Overall, it’s been very positive,” he said. “We feel very good about where we’re at.”

Beallsville’s nine sophomores comprise the bulk of its 13-player roster. It’s a core Jarrett believes is poised to do great things.

“This class is going to be our building block here,” he said. “We’re hoping in the next couple of years these guys stay together and keep working and improving.

“I’m trying to express to them how important it is during the summer for all of them to get here and work together. This could be a really good nucleus to build on for the future.”

That group is joined by a junior and three freshmen. There are no seniors. Colton Rush, who led the team with 9.8 points per game last winter, graduated.

“I’m excited about the numbers we have,” Jarrett said. “I tell the kids the more you win, the more you get people involved.

“That’s the one thing I’m stressing this year. I told them that we’re done being in survival mode. We want to go out and be competitive. I think the kids realize that we’re going to be competitive this season and not just glad to have a team.”

Spencer Jarrett (6-foot-2) is the team’s top returning rebounder.

Dakota Phillips (6-1) is another sophomore.

The point guard spot belongs to sophomore Wyatt Brown (5-9).

Jarrett is looking for continued improvement from sophomores James Schnegg (5-8) and Bryce Louden (6-0), along with their teammate, Matt Bertrand (5-6).

Kollin Ludwig (5-9) has moved into the school from Monroe Central and will have to sit out the first 11 games because of transfer rules. Jarrett is looking for big things from him once eligible.

Jacob Nalley (5-6) and Steven Yingling (5-9) are the squad’s other sophomores.

Jarrett Raab (5-6) is the team’s lone junior.

Rounding out the roster are freshmen Toby Otto (6-2), Adam Baker (6-2) and Austin Ballinger (5-7).

Jarrett is assisted by Jeff Fluharty, Michael Maddy and Andrew Valentine.

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