PALMYRA, MO. (WGEM) -- There's something to be said for being a bit more comfortable in year two of a system.
For the Palmyra boys basketball team, understanding the expectations of head coach Ryan Wood and playing with more confidence has resulted in a 9-3 start.
And the state is taking notice.
The Missouri Basketball Coaches Association has put the Panthers in their Top 10 rankings. Palmyra is 10th in Class 3 and a team on the rise in Northeast Missouri.
Wood hopes they can stay the course and continue to build off what they have accomplished thus far.
"It's a number of things for us, but right now, I think it's our balance and the kids trust each other. They know our capabilities and it's been working for us," Wood said.
"We want to apply pressure offensively and defensively. It's kind of a work in progress defensively, but at the same time, I think our kids are buying in."
According to junior Ragar McKinney, "Defense is our whole key. If we play good defensively our offense usually just comes naturally."
From an offensive standpoint the Panthers have the luxury of not having to rely on only one or two players.
Peyton Plunkett and Ragar McKinney snag most of the headlines as a strong one-two scoring punch, but Ragar Plunkett, Laithan Sublette, Landon Lucas, Jayden Durst, and Bill Nunnelly, have all proven they can fill a stat sheet.
Offensively, what's nice is that everyone on the bench, (or) off the bench, can score," senior Peyton Plunkett indicated.
"We don't need just one person to do it. We're so diverse."
Wood added: "We've had several guys step up at numerous times and fill those scoring holes we didn't have last year so much. Peyton Plunkett has been our leading scorer, but Ragar McKinney's done some very nice things as our second leading scorer, and then we have shooters like Landon Lucas and Laithan Sublette who can fill it up from 20 feet."
Palmyra's shot at hitting the double digit win mark comes Friday night when they visit Centralia.
The Panthers enter their own Tony Lenzini Tournament next week as the No. 2 seed.