Hoops Preview: Cowboys vs. FM Marcus Marauders

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Hoops Preview: Cowboys vs. FM Marcus Marauders

By John Loop
Sports Writer

“When you lose six college-level players and one NBA pro, no one is going to hold you to that same standard,” newly hired Flower Mound Marcus head coach Clay Cody said at the beginning of the 2012-13 basketball season.

Yet Cody has gotten past the overall exodus of talent both on the hardwood and the sideline to put the Marauders in a postion to compete in District 5-5A this season.

With the departures of Marcus Smart and Phil Forte, both now freshmen making an impact for the Oklahoma State mens basketball team, as well as A.J Luckey (Lubbock Christian) and Nick Banyard (New Mexico), you could say the Marauders have been effectively gutted.

This season has told a completely different story. Marcus sports a 10-14 record, not at all on track with their 114-6 clip over the last three years. All three seasons have resulted in trips to Austin for the Class 5A basketball playoffs. The Marauders were crowned state champions the latter two years of the three-year run.

Cody stepped into the coaching position after former back-to-back Texas state championship coach Danny Henderson was plucked from the Marcus sideline by the Duncanville Panthers last offseason.

With the players he has now, Cody is ready to urge on his team as they begin district play on Friday night against the Coppell Cowboys (11-12).

Standout players for Marcus are senior guards Jack Holden and Aaron Steele. Holden and Steele complement each other. You can almost guarantee that one of these two guys will score in double figures each game, if not both.

Coppell had a rocky non-district season finishing 11-12, but Cowboy head coach Kit Pehl has stressed that the team has a clean slate heading into the first game of district play tomorrow.

Junior forward Simi Socks hit the 20 point mark for the first time outside of a tournament this season in the loss to McKinney High on Tuesday night. Socks gobbled up rebounds, drew fouls going to the basket and played aggressive defense on the block.

Socks will have to face the 6’2″ tandem of Hayden Soika and Elias Haas, but, based on his effort over the last two games, he is up to the challenge.

Junior point guard Landon Goesling will have to continue to showcase his knack for distributing the ball. Goesling is currently ranked tenth in Class 5A in assists per game (4.7). Goesling has also been hot from beyond the three point arc, coming in at eighth in the rankings in triples made (2.0 per game).

For the Cowboys to win this game, the bench will also have to be reliable. Junior guard Brandon Watson poured in eight points in the win over Plano (48-45) last week and 10 points in the McKinney matchup. Both him and senior guard Walter Munnings must find some spark to compensate the starters’ contributions.

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