Council High School
Conference: 1AD2 Long Pin Conference
Classification: 1A D2
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Head Coach: JC Tucker
Years as Head Coach: 1st Season
Previous Experience: Two seasons as assistant at Council
Record Last Year: 22-4
State Titles: 2016 1AD2 Runner-Up
G Brett Rosengrant (Jr)
G Lance Nichols (Jr)
P Zane Paradis (Sr)
P JT Mahon (Sr)
Returning Players with Honors:
Rosengrant/Mahon (All-Long Pin Conference)
Key Players lost from last year:
G Ryan Rosengrant
G Jared Neal
P Herry Ludwig
Written by: Will Hoenike
There’s been a changing at the guard for the Council Lumberjacks boys’ basketball team.
Long-time, successful bench boss David Howe, who led the team to the 1A Division 2 state championship game, has hung up the whistle and has been replaced by JC Tucker. But don’t think Tucker doesn’t know his way around the Long Pin Conference.
Tucker was the 2009 Long Pin basketball MVP as a senior at rival Garden Valley High School as well as the state’s 1A Football Player of the Year. He also has ties at Salmon River High School in Riggins where his mother, Paula, is the athletic director and girls’ basketball coach.
So Tucker knows the roads he’ll be driving with this year’s Lumberjack team. Coming off of a 22-win season and an appearance in the state championship game can be tough, but Tucker got great news in the form of a doctor’s note recently, declaring returning guard Brett Rosengrant healthy and ready to play.
Rosengrant was injured and missed nearly all of the football season, where the Lumberjacks reached the state quarterfinals. Now he returns to the gym with fellow junior Lance Nichols to give Tucker a backcourt with good game experience and good shooting ability. The team also returns some size in powerful post players JT Mahon and Zane Paradis, both seniors.
“(We’ll) try to be balanced,” Tucker told the Preview about offensive keys to his team’s season. “Less turnovers and score more points in the paint.”
“Overall, it’s an athletic group,” Tucker went on to say. “And they rebound well.”
Council lost three valuable seniors off of its state runner-up squad – guards Ryan Rosengrant and Jared Neal along with post player Herry Ludwig – and Tucker says the loss of leadership could hurt every bit as much as the loss of skill. But it represents an opportunity for other players to step into more-prominent roles this season. Tucker says that’s one of the keys for him and his assistant, Brodie Nichols, going into the season.
“Howe well, as coaches, can develop depth,” Tucker said. “If we can, we should be in the mix.”
An interesting matchup on Council’s schedule is January 28, when Tucker returns to Garden Valley as the head coach of the rival Lumberjacks.
With four, key returning contributors from last season’s team that averaged nearly 68 points per game – the Lumberjacks were held under 50 points just two times all season – there’s reason to think that Council can make another run in the Long Pin Conference this season.