Coupeville point guard Jered Brown returns this season to run the Wolves’ offense. (Photo by John Fisken)

Coupeville point guard Jered Brown returns this season to run the Wolves’ offense. (Photo by John Fisken)

Winter prep preview / Coupeville boys basketball

Putting an experienced boys basketball team on the court won’t be a problem for Coupeville High School this winter.

The Wolves return all five starters and all but one from last year’s varsity roster.

The club’s “experience, depth and heart” should help it improve on its 2-16 record from 2018-19, according to coach Brad Sherman.

Back are starters seniors Jered Brown, Gavin Knoblich, Sean Toomey-Stout and Ulrik Wells and sophomore Hawthorne Wolfe.

Toomey-Stout, who was named the team’s MVP last season, and Wolfe earned all-league honorable mention last year

Also back are senior lettermen Mason Grove, Jean Lund Olsen and Jacobi Pilgrim.

Senior Koa Davison, who would have lettered last year if not for an injury, according to Sherman, also returns.

Newcomers fighting for varsity minutes are senior Tucker Hall and sophomore Xavier Murdy.

“(The first) week of practice I thought we looked really strong and energetic on the defensive side of the ball,” Sherman said. “I think we’ve got some guys with quite a bit of versatility, which gives us some flexibility in how we structure our lineups. We should be able to push the ball with more success this season – I think our transition game should be a strength for us as the season progresses.”

Places the Wolves need to improve this season, Sherman said, are cutting down on turnovers, ratcheting up on-ball defense and finishing at the rim.

Another goal is to have “excellence in our preparation,” Sherman said. “I think our goal is always to go out and compete every single night. We are really confident in this group of guys and their ability to do that if we just focus on winning all of those little things that make a difference and playing patient, fundamental basketball.”

“It probably goes without saying that it’s a big goal of ours to earn a postseason spot in February, especially for this big group of seniors who have given so much to the program,” he added. “But, for now, it’s just one day and one game at a time.”

The Wolves begin the season with back-to-back road games. They play at 6:45 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 3, in Darrington (15-7 last season) and then at 7:15 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 4, in Oak Harbor (6-14).

The first home game is 5 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 7, with Orcas Island (3-13).