Bobcat boys’ basketball prepped and ready for upcoming season

The Estes Park High School Boys’ basketball team tipped off this past Monday, Nov. 14, as they stepped on the court for what Head Coach Nick Buchman called the best first day of practice he’s seen in his three years of coaching.

After finishing last season with a tatty 7-13 record, the Bobcats got busy in the off-season, gearing toward a better turnout this year. Buchman voiced that a good deal of the team showed out for Summer league ball, where they played 16 games in the month of June alone – just a few games shy of a full regular season.

Now prepped and ready, Buchman explained that this season marks year two of building up a young program.

“We’ve really ramped up the game style, and that’s what we’re trying to do this year is really get the team playing fast up and down ball,” Buchman explained. “We’re pushing the ball up the court and pressing on defense playing that kind of chaotic ball.”

A Bobcat player reaches to snag a pass during an in-practice game.(Matthew Poust/Estes Park Trail-Gazette)

Bobcat players practice a ball handling drill during practice.(Matthew Poust/Estes Park Trail-Gazette)

Head Coach Nik Buchman talks with the team during practice.(Matthew Poust/Estes Park Trail-Gazette)

Bobcat players practice a ball handling drill during practice.(Matthew Poust/Estes Park Trail-Gazette)



While the Bobcats build on this new strategy, they’ll face the tall task of filling six holes left by 2022 graduating seniors – three of which were key players on both sides of the ball.

Brysen Long, Zeke Darnell and Collin Reetz led the team in points, assists and three-point percentage, which leaves a total of 550 points that will need to be accounted for.

Among the prospects that Buchman is looking at to step up are seniors Adam Throne, Gabe Housewright and Reece Arnold. Arnold and Housewright missed last season with injuries, but Throne was able to make a name for himself after leading the team in free throw percentage with 71%.

Junior Ryland Reetz was another impact player that Buchman hopes will make for a team leader this season. As tall man on the team, Reetz came up big on defense last season – snagging 89 rebounds, 11 blocks and finishing with a field goal percentage of 34%.

Another wall the barrier the team will have to overcome is fielding a slimmer roster than normal. During Tuesday (Nov. 15) night’s practice there were just 10 players on the court. Buchman estimated that the final number will be closer to 15 with more players expected to come out, but even with those extra five players the team is still left with fewer members than previous years.

To combat with this shallow lineup depth, the Bobcats look to use to their advantage is the high altitude in which they train. Buchman has been pushing the running hard to make sure the team is better conditioned than their opponent.

“I always say, ‘we’re at 7,500 feet, so we better be in better shape than everybody else that we play,’” said Buchman. “We look to wear teams down. We’re going to be that mosquito that just keeps biting you and doesn’t let up.”

As the Bobcats continue to get into gameplay form, they’ll play their season opener on the home court when they face off against Union Colony Prep on Tuesday, Nov. 29.

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About Pep Dekekr

Pep loves Estes Park, he lives here with his family and hopes to bring people to Estes Park and Estes Park to the people. Along with his wife Paige, they own

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