Flames "Splash Bros" Complete Versatile Veteran Group

  • 11/17/2015 8:33:04 PM
  • Brian Skowronski
  • Local Sports

Mansfield Christian's boys basketball team welcomes back just about every key contributor from last season's 15-7 sectional runners-up squad. The veteran Flames graduated just two players and feature seven seniors. Among them is low-post presence Kendall Cross, who makes up half of a diverse tandem with a nickname you may just recognize.

  "We like to call ourselves the "Splash Bros," as you might have heard before," says the tandem's second half, junior post JP Trueblood. "But we're quite the opposite of Stephen Curry and Clay Thompson."

The Flames duo doesn't shoot from the perimeter like the Golden State Warriors twosome, but rather make their living in the paint. Having two big bodies filling the lane isn't just efficient on the offensive end for Mansfield Christian, however, but also makes a difference on the defensive side of the ball.

"We've been known around the area the past couple years for our stingy defense," Cross says. "That's one thing coaches, players from other teams kind of fear."

Adding to their opponents concerns is a talented group of veteran guards that complement the Flames inside version of the "Splash Bros." The mixture of talent may be the best MC has had since senior guard Brandon Mount has been with the program.

"It's pretty well-rounded in terms of positional," Mount says of the team's roster. "I think probably the best well-rounded team in the last few years where we have a good amount of post's and a good amount of guard's that both have experience."

The Flames will surely rely on their versatile skill-set to guide them through a challenging regular season, which begins next Friday at Crestview. The squad's season tip-off won't be just another game for head coach John Kurtz, who spent three years coaching the Cougars before taking over the Flames program five years ago. It will be the first time Kurtz will face his old team at their place, and he understands the significance of his return and grabbing a win on opening night.

"The first game of the year and that being that game, yeah it would be special," says Kurtz of a potential victory. "I have a lot of good memories over there, but getting that first win of the season against anybody I think is a big win. It's a good way to start."

Mansfield Christian will travel to Crestview on Nov 27 to open the regular season at 7:30 p.m. 


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