“I’m really excited,” said Shumway, who coached the Red Devils at GCHS seven years ago and has now returned as coach for the 2013 season. “I’ve brought a whole new system. The boys have really bought into it.”
The Red Devils compete in one of the toughest regions in the state, Shumway said. The three previous 2A state champions have come from Region 15, giving Grand’s team a high standard to aim for, he said.
“We’ve got our work cut out for us,” Shumway said.
Official practices began on Nov. 11 with tryout week. Since then, the Red Devils have been hard at work during open-court practices, learning Shumway’s system and further developing the skills they need to compete against even the strongest teams in their region.
The team has a large number of seniors who will be returning for the 2013 season, according to Shumway. Those players will contribute to the stability and experience to the team as a whole, he said.
“There’s a good group of seniors with lots of experience, which is always a benefit. Our starting varsity team will probably be all seniors,” Shumway said. “Of course, there’s still time for kids to impress and move up the food chain.”
The Red Devils will play their first game of the season – a non-region home game – against Maeser Preparatory Academy on Wednesday, Dec. 4, in the GCHS gym. The varsity contest is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m.
Later that same week, Grand is scheduled to compete in the Gunnison Valley Basketball Tournament on Friday, Dec. 6 and Saturday, Dec. 7, at Gunnison.