GREENFIELD — Good shooters. Team defense needs work.
That was the assessment of Michael Lewis upon the first practices with his Greenfield-Central boys basketball team.
Lewis was hired May 30 to replace Josh Johnson, who resigned after five seasons, and Lewis has spent the last six weeks getting to know his new players.
The 30-year-old former Delphi coach is aiming to turn around a program that has suffered 10 straight losing seasons, including last year’s 5-18 mark.
Lewis – 57-33 in five seasons at Delphi – believes the Cougars have solid building blocks. G-C’s top seven scorers from a year ago return, led by six-foot-3 incoming junior Tate Hall, who averaged 14.7 points as an All-Hancock County honoree.
“I think that there’s no doubt we’ve got some kids who can shoot the basketball,” Lewis said. “I think that will be a strength of ours. I think we’ve got multiple kids who can step and make the 3.”
In June, the Cougars traveled to a shootout at Purdue University as well as a team camp at Rose-Hulman. Hall, seniors Dallas Pribble (7.5 ppg last season) and Zach Batton (4.0) and juniors Blake Robertson (3.0) and Chandler Bean (5.8) – all guards – were among the summer shooting leaders for the club, Lewis said.
Senior forwards Cole Oleksy (8.0 ppg) and Griffin Lowe (5.6 ppg) are also key returnees for a group without overwhelming size.
“They are both going to be essential,” the coach remarked of the twin posts. “If they are active and aggressive they will add another element to our team.”