By GREG KEIM
THE GOSHEN NEWS
Some old and some new might be one way to describe the 2012-13 Jimtown High School boys basketball team.
The old is the six letterwinners returning from last season’s 4-17 team (1-6 in the Northern State Conference). The new is three freshmen on the varsity roster and a new coach in Ron Dietz.
Dietz has 18 years of head coaching experience (177-194 record), the last of which was at Concord from 1994-95 to 1998-99 when he guided the Minutemen to a 49-60 mark.
He replaces Derrick DeShone who resigned after one season.
“One of my goals every year is improving upon last season’s record,” Dietz said. “We have had a little setback as last season’s leading scorer Evan Oblinger (239 points) didn’t come out. He wants to focus on baseball. So we don’t have a lot of scoring back among the returnees.”
The Jimmies host Lakeland Christian Tuesday to open the season.
The returning veterans are 5-11 senior guard Alec Brown (11), 5-10 senior guard-forward Mason Brown (58), 6-6 senior center-forward Augie Farwig (33), 6-4 forward-center Michael Hobbs (69), 5-10 junior guard Luke Crocker (2) and 6-2 junior guard Chase Hoeflinger (41).
“Farwig and Hobbs give us an inside presence,” Dietz said. “We have a number of outside shooters.”
The Jimmies will begin the season without Alec Brown who is dealing with a high right ankle sprain.
“He is probably going to be out about three to four weeks,” the coach said. “He does an outstanding job leading the team.
“Hoeflinger is a possibility to replace him. If not we might have to go with one of the freshmen.”
Dietz is making a few changes in the system.
“The kids have been more than receptive to the changes we are making,” the coach said. “We would like to have a little more of an up tempo offense. My philosophy is you get a third of your points on offense, a third on defense and a third on breaks. The breaks are a little bit of a change for Jimtown.”
Defense is one area Dietz doesn’t plan to make changes. The Jimmies have been known for their man-to-man style and had a stretch from the 2004-05 season to the 2009-10 campaign where they allowed less than an average of 40 points per game.
“Man defense has been the bread and butter here and I don’t see a reason to change,” he said.
Another senior is 5-11 forward Brody Olson and a sophomore is 6-2 forward Nick Floyd.
The freshmen are 5-10 guard Adam DeShone, 6-1 guard Dylan Guldager and 6-3 guard-forward Trevor Hobbs.
“The three of them are going to help us this year,” Dietz said. “The biggest problem they seem to have is speeding up to much. The varsity game is faster, but we don’t want them playing too fast, especially if we have to use one of them at point guard while Brown is out. Fast is not what we want out of our quarterback.”
Losses to graduation were Justin Brown (227), Corleone Desimore (115), Kasey Henkler (60), Cameron Kois and James Schott.
Dietz’s coaching staff includes Alan Grzeskowiak, Tyler Leighton, Ryan Gingerich, Dave Sharpe and Joel Sienicki.
Leighton is a former Jimtown player. As a senior, he was the leading scorer (415 points) during the 2003-04 season when the Jimmies won the Class 2A state championship as Jimtown became the first Elkhart County boys basketball team to win a state title.