Returning core gives Gators reason for optimism
November 16, 2010 4:06 PM
Despite losing a tough 82-65 game in their regular season opener against Long Beach State University on Nov. 15, the SF State men's basketball team has high expectations this year.
"We are deeper this year," said Marquel Hoskins, the Gators' starting point guard who finished Monday's game with 16 points.
Coach Paul Trevor replaced Bill Treseler, who coached the Gators for five seasons but resigned at the end of last season to spend more time with his family.
Trevor spent the last eight seasons coaching at Cal State San Bernardino, including six as associate head coach. His familiarity with the 12 other CCAA teams will help the Gators as they look to improve upon last season.
The Gators finished the 2009-10 season 10-12 in their division but were 17-14 overall and made it to the playoffs for the third consecutive season. However, they lost 92-80 to the Cal State San Bernardino Coyotes in the first round of the CCAA basketball championships.
"Treseler and Trevor have similar styles. They are both pretty intense on the court and fun to talk to off the court," said Phoenix O'Rourke, a senior guard and co-captain.
Hoskins was first-team All-CCAA last season and won the 2009-10 Men's Basketball Newcomer of the Year award. He also received honorable mention when he was named to the Sporting News Preseason All-American team and the Division II Bulletin 2010-11 Preseason All-American team.
"We are just going to try and use our strengths," Trevor said. "We are strong and have great quickness. We like to put pressure defensively and spread out on offense."
He also said the experience of his returning players, combined with the return of assistant coach Johnathn Weber for his fifth season, has prepared the Gators for their preseason schedule.
"In taking over this program, what's expected from our returning players is leadership, character and work ethic," Trevor said. "They set those standards. As for Weber, he has been fantastic. He is a great resource and has made the transition easy for me."
However, the veteran players also have high expectations for the team's new additions.
Jamari Simmons, Abraham Leibovitz and Max Fodor, all freshmen, are new to the Gators' squad.
Still, experience is the key to the season, which helped the Division II Gators pull within
The hope is that the returning players and their freshmen teammates can bounce back Nov. 21 when they hit the road to face Cal State Monterey Bay in the CCAA opener.
"We are going to be contenders this year. Having experience in this league is important," O'Rourke said.
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