Bulldogs hope to end season in Birmingham

Published 3:00 am Friday, November 25, 2016

The Pike County Bulldogs won’t be sneaking up on anyone this season after advancing all the way to the Class 3A Final Four a year ago.

“We are very excited,” said Bulldogs head coach Doug Holland. “We look forward to building on it (last season’s success) as a program.”

The Bulldogs return just two players off last season’s region champion team in Juhmir and Jahzarian Lampley, but have a roster full of role players.

“We have some guys that can fill some roles,” Holland said. “These were guys that had a chance to play in the playoffs last year. Hopefully getting that exposure early will translate into this year.”

The Bulldogs entered last season as a team that wasn’t expected to make a lot of noise come playoff time.

“We won’t surprise anyone this year,” Holland said. “They’re a lot of teams that are anxious to play us. Anytime you set the bar that high the last three years, you’re going to have a bulls-eye on you.”

The Bulldogs are saddled with the task of replacing Kamori Jackson, Deshaun Cowling and Jerrell Lawson this season. Holland believes that both Juhmir and Jahzarian Lampley can help fill the holes.

“I am looking for them to step up,” Holland said. “Juhmir really stands out to me. He has the ability to lead our team this year. We haven’t played the most out of those guys, but we are looking at Juhmir to take the lead and be a leader.”

Pike County will look to be an athletic team that runs the floor this year, but they also help they will be able to look inside a little more as well.

“We have guys that we haven’t had in a while to play the post,” Holland said. “We are going to be athletic.”

Due to the success of the football program, the basketball team was forced to push back the start of practice.

“You can see the rust and that we are not very crisp on the floor,” Holland said. “With time it will come. We will stay a little longer and work hard, there are no excuses.”

The Bulldogs were one of many teams to be put in new areas heading into the season. They will be paired with Wicksburg, Providence Christian, Daleville and Houston Academy.

“We played Daleville last year and they are going to be competitive,” Holland said. “The area is going to be competitive.”

The Bulldogs will kick off their season on December 6 when they host their cross county rivals in the Goshen Eagles.