Pats plan to turn up heat

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, November 4, 2003

Last season, Jeff Hines had to hit the ground running with his Wallace-Selma hoops team.

The coach assumed the reigns of the program In August and never looked back, but the team struggled to a 6-15 record.

Now with a full off-season of workouts and recruiting under his belt, Hines is back with more depth, an aggressive game plan and a versatile basketball team.

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In the fast-changing world of junior college baseball, turnover is part of the process.

But Hines has six players back from last year’s squad.

One of the returning starters is James Cleveland, a 6′ 3&uot; sophomore from Selma High. Cleveland averaged 17 points a game last season and was named to the All-Freshman team.

The Pats have two starters returning at the guard spots, but Hines had some holes to fill up front.

David Clark, 6-foot-9, of Phenix City and Selma’s 6-foot-7 Johnny King give Hines the post presence he needs and the anchors to his aggressive attack.

Last season, the Patriots lacked the depth to run opponents out of the gym.

This season, Hines hopes his team will be similar to the old Nolan Richardson Arkansas teams.

In addition to the two former Selma High stars, Hines has several other local players.

Freshman Quindel Givan is from Southside, Donovan Dixon is from Dallas County and Ben Johnson played at Marion Academy.

Hines hasn’t decided on a starting line-up, but Cleveland looks like a lock at small forward. Brons Anderson will see a lot of time at the two-guard.

Wayne Garrett is playing well at the power forward spot. King and Clark are still competing for the starting center spot.

Antonio Minnefield and Donovan Dixon are battling at the point guard spot.

But the way Hines plans to play, everyone will get their minutes.

With their sights set firmly on post-season play, Hines and his Patriots hope their frenetic style and a return to winning will help bring the fans back out to Wallace.