Expectations high for veteran-led Westminster group


In his first season as the Westminster head basketball coach last season, Kevin Trujillo’s team could only muster up three wins in 23 tries. However, led by a talented senior class of nine and morale high, a new year brings a new opportunity for Westy basketball.

“The expectations are extremely high,” Trujillo said last week in an email. “These boys have had a very busy offseason. Leadership should come from multiple players: (seniors) Seneca Brewer, Manny Madera and Jesse Carrillo.”

Playing at a quicker offensive speed matched with tenacious, turnover-thriving defensive play, Trujillo and his team pride themselves on making the opposition uncomfortable. When performing their best a season ago, those factors came to fruition in spirts. Consistency of playing to their strengths will be essential for this group this season, and with the depth obtained over the offseason, playing at this style should be found more routinely this campaign.

In approximately 75 games over the spring, summer and fall, the younger group of sophomores and juniors participated in pivotal, offseason game-action. Impressing throughout that time frame, JJ Aguilar, Robert Barron, Gilbert Bujanda, Jesse Chhay, Hunter Lantz, Robert Montes, Adrian Saldana and Tommy Kennedy all improved as their roles change to varsity level if needed.

Senior-wise, Jesus Barron, Devin McCleave, Manny Madera, Orlando Morgan, Gadge Ware, Brewer and Carrillo also played in around 50 games this offseason and according to Trujillo was “very competitive.” Ware, J. Barron and Brewer will be vital in where this team goes as Bujanda, R. Barron and Kennedy could also make substantial contributions also.

“Our primary goal this year is to be competitive in each and every game. We are in a far better place today than we were a year ago,” Trujillo said. “Things that we have learned from our first season is that we are doing things the right way and that we must stay the course as success doesn’t happen overnight. During the offseason, we continuously received positive affirmation from other coaches and parents that the progress that we were making was moving in the right direction. Sometimes it was even annoying when it would come after a game that we should have won but may have come up short. The flip-side of that coin is that we are competing at a much higher level at all levels. The boys now believe that they should win each game that they play. We will continue with our mission of teaching, developing, organizing, managing and offering all of our players the opportunity of learning the fundamental skills of basketball while instilling life lessons and values.”

The Wolves were set to tip-off their season Dec. 2 at home against Gateway.


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