Fluco boys basketball squad is an unknown quantity

By Duncan Nixon

In 2022-23 the Fluco basketball squad had a successful season that was built primarily around three senior guards. They have all moved on, of course, but Fluco Coach Heath Bralley said that he think this years’ squad could be in the mix in the tough Jefferson District.

Two players were serious contributors last year return. Benny Denby, a junior, was the teams’ big man last season and he may have grown an inch to 6-8. Bralley said he has gained strength which he will need against some of the other big players in the district. He was a first team all Jefferson District tight end for the Fluco football team and an effective linebacker. Chazz Barksdale-White was the team’s fourth guard last year in Bralley’s three guard offense so he got a lot of playing time, and he should step up nicely in his senior year. Barksdale-White was a speedy receiver for the football team and was second team All-Jefferson District.

Bralley expects to play a lot of athletes this year and he looks to have a strong bench. Two other players moving over from the football team and up from last years’ JV basketball team are sophomore forward Will Lambert and sophomore guard Sam Loving. Lambert was also second team All-Jefferson District on the gridiron at quarterback. Loving was an effective running back. In addition to Denby, Bralley has some other forwards with size. Junior Sean Tyler is 6-4 and senior Conner Jefferies and junior Mason Kirby are 6-2. Jeffries was a backup forward for Bralley last year and he has a lot of game experience.

Other forwards are junior DeAndre McCloud and senior Jaden Bowler. Also ready to go are guards Dajuan Robinson, JeTayveon Lucas and Tyzhier Martin. Robinson and Lucas are seniors and Martin is a junior. Bralley did not go really deep on to his bench last year, but expects to do so this year, so all of his 12 athletes may get playing time.

The Flucos played scrimmages on Nov. 21 and 27 against Harrisonburg and Wilson Memorial, both away. Their regular season starts on the road, as well. On Dec. 1, they play at Buckingham County, followed by games on Dec. 4 and 8 at Turner Ashby and Louisa County. Their first home game is Dec. 11 against Buckingham. On Dec.12, they travel to Western Albemarle and then host Monticello High on Dec. 15. The season runs through Feb. 6, when the Flucos will host Charlottesville.

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