Slightly south of the .500 mark is not where the Wolverines expected to be at the start of the season.
But a little reality check might go a long way for a team that not only returns four-out-of-five starters, but promises to be bigger, faster and even longer on experience than the one that finished the campaign of a year ago with an 11-3 record in league play, and 16-6 overall.
Oh yeah, the 2011-12 team, which featured Collin Williamson, Otis Cooper-West, Donald Galt and C.J. Woods in the starting rotation, all of whom are back in the lineup, also clinched the program’s first home playoff game in nearly a decade along the way.
Williamson and company will be looking to turn the ship around in hurry after stumbling against Bear Creek in their home opener, Dec. 8. They managed to put up just three points in the final period.
“There’s a lot of games to go,” Williamson said. “My personal goal is to try to get into the post-season, and in the post-season you just can’t afford to make mistakes or have an off game.”
With Williamson (6’4”) and Cooper-West (6’5”) anchoring the interior, the Wolverines have strength, size and experience inside, and two “big men” that can step out and drain a three-pointer as well. On the wings, Galt, a senior, and Woods, a junior, bring firepower, speed and defensive intensity to the court.
“We’re pretty much the same team as last year,” Cooper-West said. “We’re going to do some of the same things as last year and hopefully we’ll improve on them.”
This season, Friday Harbor’s fate may well rest in the hands of whomever steps up to fill the void left behind by Dakota Rosales, a consummate point-guard who a year ago ran the offense and distributed the ball. Second-year players Sergio Trujillo, and juniors Dylan and Levi Demaris, as well as sophomores Bill Revercomb and Peter Strasser, are all vying to inherit the spot.
The Wolverines will have two new regional 1A opponents to contend with in the hunt for a berth in post-season play. In addition to the Whatcom schools, Lynden Christian, Meridian and Nooksack Valley, and Coupeville, a pair of former Division 2A schools, Blaine and Mount Baker, have joined the ranks of the district’s 1A rivals.
— Scott Rasmussen