HIGHLAND MEN'S BASKETBALL PREVIEW
Cougars ready for another solid year
By JOEY BASKERVILLE, email@example.com
Published: Thursday, November 1, 2007 10:46 PM CDT
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It's a new year for the Highland men's basketball team and the Croatian players - Ante Dzepina, Mario
Gagulic and Damjan Toljan - have grown a bit more accustomed to life in the states. And more
importantly, to playing basketball for Highland.
"They seemed to have adjusted well," Highland coach Pete Norman said. "They all seemed to have done
And this year sophomore Gamaliel Rose, from Nassau in the Bahamas, joined the team. However, all four
foreign players will not make the team this year.
"Unfortunately, we're going to have to redshirt one of those guys," Norman said. "I'm not sure which one
yet. Last year we could have four international players. This year you can only have three. It'll probably
be decided before the game tonight."
One positive note is that the Cougars won't have to worry about one player.
Talented point guard Ed "Boomer" Tucker, who averaged 12.8 points, 3.9 rebounds and 3.7 assists per
game returns for his sophomore season.
"He's as good as he wants to be," Norman said. "He's got all the tools to be a top player this year."
Norman said he would like for Tucker to stay consistent with his working habits to maintain his high level
Tucker, along with fellow sophomores Roy Baker and Anthony Simpson, will need to work well with
newcomers Anthony Boyle, Devan Bawinkel and Rober Eppinger this season, if they want to improve on
last season's 20-14 record.
"I think we have the ability to have a nice year," Norman said. "But there's going to be some growing
pains and chemistry issues that goes with building a team that we want to be in March."
And that chemistry must develop in a timely fashion since the team has a tougher schedule this season.
The Cougars will face Southwest Tennessee as well as Three Rivers this year.
Some of the primary goals include winning the Kennedy-King Tip-Off Tournament, which takes place
tonight and Saturday in Chicago, as well as other tournaments throughout the earlier portion of the
season. To do that, Norman would like to see the defense improve as well as wanting the Cougars to crash
to boards throughout the year.