SESSER-VALIER
BY JACK BULLOCK
The Red Devils had a rough season in 2015-16, which isn't the norm of this basketball program.
After winning at least 20-games in 7-of-8 seasons, Sesser-Valier dropped to 10-20 last season and lost in the first round of the Christopher 1A Regional.
In those seven seasons of 20-plus, the Red Devils won six regional titles, two sectionals and supersectionals and took home second place and a fourth place trophies for the school.
Don't expect this crew do be down long.
In spite of graduation and transfer losses, Sesser-Valier will have some kids for head coach Shane Garner to work with.
Two starters return for Sesser-Valier.
Charles Farmer, a 6-foot-2 senior, is back as is Jamie Lance, a 6-foot-3 senior.
Addison Baxter, a 6-foot-2 senior also started some games for Coach Garner.
Last season this coach used a lot of different lineups to try to find something that would work.
The good that came out of it was experience gained by the underclassmen.
Lukas Gunter, a 5-foot-11 sophomore, played a lot of minutes as did Preston Launius, a 6-foot-3 junior.
More minutes should go to some other players as this team could be deep and interchangeable.
Six-foot-one Addison Page, 6-foot Joshua Gunter and 5-foot-10 Clayton Smith will have motive and opportunity.
Coach Garner also mentioned a pair of sophomores; Tyler Winchester and Seth Boles, who could provide minutes.
This team will need to be a deep, ready franchise if they are going to compete with the schedule that they play. Five games in six days at the Benton Invitational Tournament will get them ready for the post-season.
Coach Garner was a multi-sport athlete in high school at Sesser-Valier and played baseball at SIU. He was part of a very winning sports program at S-V as a player and now as a coach.
“We gained a lot of experience last year,” said Coach Garner. “We will be very deep and will look to play a lot of guys in a very uptempo style of play. Our lineup could change from night to night.”
2017-18 VARSITY SCHEDULE
N27-D2 Du Quoin "Tip-Off Classic" J15-20 Benton Invitational Tournament

D5

Okawville J26 @ Campbell Hill Trico
D8 @ Chester J27 Vienna
D12 Johnston City J30 Woodlawn
D15 @ Christopher F2 Zeigler-Royalton
D19 @ Vienna F6 @ Waltonville
D26-29 Sesser-Valier Holiday Tournament F9 @ Goreville
J6 Campbell Hill Trico F13 Christopher
J9 Goreville F16 Chester
J12 @ Zeigler-Royalton F19-23 IHSA Regional TBD