West Hancock Basketball: Embracing Expectations - WGEM.com: Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

West Hancock Basketball: Embracing Expectations

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Titans senior Paxton Harmon was one of the states leading scorers last season. Titans senior Paxton Harmon was one of the states leading scorers last season.
Head coach Reno Pinkston and senior guard Paxton Harmon. Head coach Reno Pinkston and senior guard Paxton Harmon.
Titans practice on Tuesday in Warsaw. Titans practice on Tuesday in Warsaw.

WARSAW, Ill. (WGEM) -- With four players returning to the staring line-up from a 22 win team, expectations will be high, but the West Hancock Titans are embracing the pressure that comes their way.

Head coach Reno Pinkston expects his team, who has heavy experience, to hit the ground running.

"We are looking to perform early," Pinkston told WGEM Sports.

"Not just play hard, we know we're going to play hard, but it's because these guys have played together, because we've run some of these sets and specials with these guys since the end of last year."

"This year it shouldn't be anything foreign to them."

His players agree that clicking early is a focal point heading into the Suns Classic next week.

"Harmon: Right now everyone is (0-0), and we need to come out strong in those first four games," said senior guard Paxton Harmon. 

"We're definitely hungry, but there's a big target on our backs coming off of a good season last year," added senior guard Austin Hardy.

"People are going to give us their best game every time we play them."

Paxton Harmon was one of the top scorers in all of 2A basketball a year ago, and will anchor the offense.

Supporting fire from Austin Hardy, Coy Dorothy, and big man Parker Gibbs could be the key.

"People are going to rum gimmicks against us to try to stop Paxton," said Austin Hardy.

"We need other people to step up and score for us to get to that next level."

"Everybody knows who Paxton is," added Reno Pinkston.

"He is the facilitator for our offense and he creates a lot for his teammates, but there are times when I'm going to run some plays and other guys need to step up and create on their own."

For the Titans, a strong start and winning regular season games is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to long term goals.

"We don't want to lose in the second round of regionals this year," Paxton Harmon expressed.

"We have our goals set high and we're working hard for it, but just because we had that season last year, it doesn't mean anything this year."

West Hancock will get the ball rolling on Monday night against Unity in it's opening game of the Suns Classic.

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