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Crook County High School Cowboys will have a deeper squad for the 2021-22 season

LON AUSTIN - Cameron Carr defends against Trent West during the Cowboys' practice. Carr and West are two players coach Jason Mumm said the squad will enter the year depending upon. The Cowboys lost nearly all the scoring off last year's undefeated league championship squad, which set a historic high mark for the program. The success may have helped drive 46 players to come out for basketball this year.On paper, it is a rebuilding year for the Crook County High School boys basketball team.

The Cowboys have just two returning players from last year's undefeated league champion squad.

However, that doesn't mean that the Cowboys do not still have talent.

"Our numbers were really good I think we had 46 kids come out so we've got three full teams," head coach Jason Mumm said. "We had about 21 guys competing for a varsity spot. I think to start with we have 11 or 12 on the varsity roster with room to add three more. So, we will swing some guys and we will do some different things. I was real happy with the competition and we are still competing too."

The Cowboys should rely heavily on returning varsity players Ozzie Reed and Cameron Carr. In addition, transfer Trent West also has varsity experience.

The remainder of the Cowboy lineup is likely to change several times before Crook County finally settles on a lineup.

"We will play around with our lineup for a while, because we don't really know who is going to be where, who is going to play what minutes and who is going to do what," Mumm said. "We kind of have a rough idea but that is fluid and will still change."

The Cowboys may not have quite as much height as a year ago, but they still have some size, and Mumm is pleased with the athleticism he is seeing in practice.

"We are going to be a lot different than we were last year," he said. "We don't have as much experience so we will just have to see how it goes. Going into this year we don't know exactly what we have versus going into last year we knew exactly what we had. We will have to see who steps up. I really like the pieces that we have. I really like the team that we have and the players that we have and we will have to see how it fits together. We are athletic. We are long and quick and can get after it defensively. Hopefully, we can shoot the ball a little bit."

Scoring could be an issue. The Cowboys lost virtually all their scoring from a year ago, including Kevin Sanchez and Cayden Lowenbach, who both averaged around 20 points a game a year ago. However, Mumm is confident that the team can still find ways to score.

In addition, Mumm is pleased with the leadership that he is seeing from his two seniors, Reed and West.

"Really good," he said of the team's leadership. "We have got two seniors that have really stepped up and taken the reigns and they are running the show right now. I am really happy with our two seniors that have taken that leadership role and are getting guys going."

The Cowboys will open the season on Friday in the Central Oregon Tip-Off Classic. All games will take place at Crook County High School, with play starting at 4 p.m. as Ridgeview takes on Dallas. At 5:45 p.m. McMinnville will play Bend Senior High. The Cowboys will play in the nightcap as they host Summit in a game that is scheduled to start at 7:30 p.m.

All six teams are back in action on Saturday, with Ridgeview facing McMinnville at 11 a.m. The Cowboys playing Bend at 1 p.m. and Summit taking on Dallas at 3 p.m.

The Cowboys will be at home again on Tuesday, Dec. 7, when they take on Gresham in a 6:30 p.m. contest.

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