ROCKVILLE — With a roster chock full of familiar faces, the Solano Community College men’s basketball team is hoping for big things this season.
Of the 12 players on the 2012-13 roster, seven are from Fairfield High schools. Of those, six are Fairfield High grads and all of those were major contributors in high school.
“We’re real excited about the local talent that we have,” said Solano coach John Nagle. “We’re excited that the community staying home helping is to move the program forward.”
Nagle credited the addition last year of former Fairfield coach Eddie Wilson in helping get local kids to stick around.
“That definitely was a plus,” Nagle said. “That’s just a testament to him and the relationships he was able to build and the respect that players have for him, and they’re eager to continue to be part of what he’s involved in. It’s not surprising by the caliber of coach he is.”
Now it falls too Nagle to take the talent he’s brought in and make it into a cohesive unit.
“I think it’s been a real nice blend,” Nagle said. “Fortunately, we have our three stat leaders back as sophomores.”
Those three are proving solid leaders for the big crop of freshmen Nagle lured to Rockville.
“There’s familiarity with the group of players we’re bringing in,” he said. “They work real hard on and off the court. The (sophomores) are being good leaders. It’s been nice process so far.”
MIke Stockton, Mike McKinney and LeQuan Gomes are also solid representations of the type of players the Falcons have this year.
“They’re very versatile, skilled offensively, competitive and versatile defensively as well,” the coach said. “It’s nice to have experience in those type of athletes. Mike and Mike are good (3-point) shooters and smart decision makers. They share the ball and get their teammates involved. LeQuan has a competitive drive that few players have – his motor and speed are impressive to watch as a coach.”
The newcomers are also finding their spots.
Nagle and company brought in seven freshmen, four from Fairfield.
Those include Rodriguez’s Daniel Badger and three from Fairfield High, including posts Jamarae Moss and Corey Doran, and guard Jalen Dupree.
Also joining Solano this year are Michael Tomelloso of Dixon High, Jacob Keys from Granite Bay, and Tim Mohr out of Davis.
“The Fairfield guys, Jamarae, Corey and Jalen, fit in schematically,” Nagle said. “I’m excited about their length and versatility. We just have a collection of quality players. They do everything offensively and defensively. It’s a little untraditional, but it’s not a bad untraditional.”
Solano opened its season going 1-2 at the Ohlone College tournament in Fremont, and continues with a handful of tournaments on the road before its 6 p.m. home opener against Reedley on Dec. 18.
The Falcons begin Bay Valley Conference play hosting Yuba College on Jan. 2 with a 7:30 p.m. tip-off.
“I’m really excited. I feel that we’ve improved,” Nagle said of his team’s chances in the conference. “We’re really optimistic about the potential for growth and development. The whole conference should be up. Traditionally it’s been Yuba and Los Medanos, but everyone’s greatly improved.”
That should make for a fun season for the Falcons.
Reach Mike Corpos at 427-6979, or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/mcorposdr.