Conference: 1AD2 Rocky Mountain Conference
Classification: 1A D2
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Head Coach: Jesse Adams
Years as Head Coach: 3rd Season
G Kyson Poletti (Jr); F Mark Mathison (Sr); W Sam Hayes; W JD Lea
Key Players lost from last year:
G Drew Weathermon, F Ethan Manley
Incoming impact players:
F Cody Shurte (Soph); F Hunter Rogers (Soph); G Parker Simmons (Fr)
Written by: Will Hoenike
The Watersprings Warriors, a member of the IHSAA since the 2013-14 season, picked up its sixth win of the season on January 21 last season. It was a high-water moment, representing the most wins since the program had joined the IHSAA.
Unfortunately, there would be no more. The team struggled to score the ball down the stretch before being knocked out of the District Tournament by North Gem, ending its season at 6-10 overall.
However, that doesn’t deter people from seeing this as a young program that is still on the rise.
“The ‘X-Factor’ is to buy in to the system and focus on getting better every day as individuals and as a team,” head coach Jesse Adams told The Preview. “We strive to focus on doing the little things right and give a great effort on every play and every day.”
The Warriors return four key pieces of the puzzle, led by senior forward Mark Mathison and junior guard Kyson Poletti. Poletti runs the team from the point guard position while Mathison brings defense and intensity to the floor. Wing players Sam Hayes and JD Lea also return, giving Adams added experience and talent. Freshman guard Parker Simmons could earn key minutes, as could sophomore forwards Cody Shurte and Hunter Rogers.
“We are excited to see how much we can improve each day and how we can become a family as a team,” Adams continued. “We have a tough conference with some really good teams. We want to focus on us getting better and are not going to worry about the rankings.”
Clark County and Rockland represented District V-VI in the 1A Division II State Tournament last season. Clark County reached the semifinals while Rockland bounced back from an opening-round loss to reach the Consolation Final. Both of those teams come to Watersprings (located in Idaho Falls) during a season-ending four-game homestand that could determine the Warriors’ fate in terms of seeding for the District Tournament.
Prior to that final homestand, the Warriors play one home game between December 8 and January 14, including a stretch of three consecutive road games at Butte County, Clark County and Sho-Ban.
The team will also play a home-and-home set against Lima, MT, located about 90 miles north of Idaho Falls along Interstate 15.
“It is a privilege to spend a lot of time working on growing better as a team each day,” Adams concluded. “It is great to see the improvement from the hard work and dedication.”