Wednesday, September 30, 2020
Sept. 30, 2020

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Woodland Boys: Beavers build with new head coach

By , Columbian sports reporter

First-year coach Jesse Buck couldn’t have asked for a better first week at Woodland.

“Everyone is coachable and they work hard,” Buck said after a preseason practice. “There are no egos and everyone gets along really well.”

It makes for a welcome transition into the head-coaching ranks for Buck, who was the junior varsity coach at Washougal the past three seasons.

Buck hopes to implement a defense-first mentality at Woodland, one that is known for being “gritty and tough.”

“We want to hang our hat on the defensive end and make teams earn points in the half-court,” he said.

On the offensive end, the Beavers are guard-heavy but lack size. They’ll have to play small ball and get out in transition to score consistently.

Isaiah Flanagan returns after earning all-league honors a season ago. The 6-foot-2 senior guard will be counted on to handle the bulk of scoring. Trey Hanson will also take on a scoring role as a 5-foot-10 interior presence.

“He’s just a mismatch problem,” Buck said. “He’s very strong inside but can also step out and shoot when we need him to.”

Brady Burns, a 6-foot junior guard, will run the point for the Beavers.

“All three of those guys are two-way players, great leaders and work exceptionally hard,” Buck said.

The Beavers are seeking a return to the postseason after a two-year absence following a 2017 regional appearance.