GRANVILLE – The good news: Granville Christian’s boys made 6 of 15 3-pointers in their season opener.
The bad news: the Lions turned it over 29 times in a 20-point loss against Emmanuel Christian.
There will be growing pains this winter for GCA, which lost leading scorer Caleb Patton to graduation and doesn’t have a senior on the roster. Coach Tom Young knows it will take time, but said the Lions have potential to mature into a good team.
“We shoot it pretty well, but our ball handling is suspect,” he said. “But it’s something we can correct.”
GCA started three juniors and two sophomores in the opener. A junior and a freshman come off the bench. “The rest of them will play JV, and a lot of them are first-year players,” Young said. “We have no depth yet.”
Junior Andrew Uible, a 5-foot-9 scrapper, has the most experience from last year and will be one of the team leaders. Other junior starters include Michael Dawson (5-9) and Noah Lynd (6-3).
“Both Andrew and Michael are threats, and Noah is much improved over last year,” Young said. “This is only his second year, and he has chance to get better.”
A player to watch is 6-1 sophomore point guard Landon Sanford, who grew three inches.
“He’s our best shooter and ball handler,” Young said. “He has a chance to be really good.”
Classmate Aaron Spridgeon (5-9), a good screener and shooter, rounds out the starting five.
Sheldon Weekley, a 6-4 junior, gives the Lions good size off the bench and is the sixth man. Phillip Kiser, a 5-10 freshman, is next man up.
“We have to slow the tempo and pick our spots in transition,” Young said. “Even though we have quickness, we have to keep it under control because of our depth. We have to spread the defense out and get open shots.”
Young said this team will have to develop its own identity.
“Last year, when things got tight, we got the ball to Caleb (Patton), and he’s not there any more,” he said. “Eventually, it will come. It will just take a little time. The good news is, all of them are back next year.”
GCA hosts Gahanna Christian on Saturday in the Fifth Street Gym. The Lions will play public schools Northridge, Utica, North Union, Millersport, Crooksville and Miller in 2015-16.