Bulldogs take the court

Posted 11/17/20

The North Zulch basketball team began their pre-district slate Tuesday at NZHS against Mumford and will take on Aggieland Homeschool in their homecoming matchup Saturday.

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Bulldogs take the court

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The North Zulch basketball team began their pre-district slate Tuesday at NZHS against Mumford and will take on Aggieland Homeschool in their homecoming matchup Saturday.

The Bulldogs are competing under new head coach and Athletic Director Clay Todd in 2020 as they join Class 1A and prepare to battle a new district.

“I really focus on the day-to-day process,” said Todd when asked of his expectations for the team. “I want them to have a good practice today. I tell them if their practice is good today, that is how you are going to beat a great team in January or February. Then we focus on tomorrow. A successful season for us would be getting the most out of what these kids area capable of, I think they are definitely capable of making the playoffs and upsetting some really good teams.”

Todd began his coaching career as an assistant with Onalaska and Central (Pollak) High School before accepting his first head coaching job at West Hardin in 2015. Todd led West Hardin to the playoffs in two seasons, including a fourth place and third place finish in district along with a playoff loss at the buzzer. He comes to North Zulch after coaching Normangee for three years.

After competing against a 2A district last year, the Bulldogs will join 1A Region IV District 29 with Richards, Buckholts, Round Top-Carmine, Bartlett, Calvert, Dime Box and Fayetteville.

“We know we got some work to do to get ready for Calvert and Dime Box,” said Todd. “We know we are going to have to take care of the ball and be really good at shot selection and running an offense that helps us out in making sure we pass the ball to the correct spots. Our district is going to be tough, but I think we got the guys to compete and put us in a position to do something good in the end.”

The team’s roster consists of a number of returning varsity contributors from a season ago and will feature more size at key positions. The roster features a 6’3 post presence in Haseeb Sattar and a 6’5 post presence in Gage O’Neal along with 6’2 point guard Emory Broussard.

“We got some size to us,” said Todd. “We are focusing on getting the ball inside so we can open up our shooting game on the outside and we are teaching those guys how to use their bodies to get good positioning.

“Our main focus defensively is going to be not allowing paint touches. We want to force the offense to take bad shots and contested two-pointers on the dribble. The next thing we want to focus on is rebounding, and I think we have the length and size to do that.”

Despite restrictions relating to the COVID-19 pandemic, the team has been able to get in consistent offseason work during the school’s athletic periods since September.

“I am new coming in this year, so it helps for them to kind of get to know me a little bit and I am getting to know them,” said Todd. “The kids have been working hard. They’ve done everything I have asked of them so far.”

The Bulldogs are scheduled to tip against Aggieland Homeschool in Saturday’s homecoming bout at 3 p.m. They will travel to St. Joseph’s in Bryan Tuesday.

North Zulch is scheduled to open district play in Fayetteville Dec. 15.

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