Thursday, October 26, 2005
Hannah, Ayers ready to shine for Dragons
The Paris (Texas) Junior college Dragons have a new head coach - who is no stranger to the team or the school - a core of returning players and some talented newcomers, a mix that will make for an exciting 2006-07 season.
As Ross Hodge makes ready for his first season as head coach of the PJC Dragons men’s basketball team, he has an advantage: Hodge is already more than familiar with both his team and the college.
Hodge, who served as assistant under former head coach Bill Foy, was named head coach earlier this year when Foy left to join the men’s basketball program at the University of North Texas. Hodge also played for the Dragons when he was a student at PJC.
“That definitely helps,” said Hodge. “Playing here, then working here, I have the support of the teachers, administration and the community. I’m comfortable in my surroundings.”
With a strong group of returning players joined by promising newcomers, Hodge looks forward to getting the season under way.
Last year’s Dragons took the conference championship with an 18-4 record (24-6 on the season) before losing to Tyler Junior College in the quarterfinals of the Region XIV tournament.
Hodge said he expects some new Dragons to make their presence felt immediately. Among those are Clevin Hannah and Brandon Ayers, both from Holly Springs, where they helped their high school team win back-to-back state titles.
“Clevin Hannah is a point guard – just really makes everyone around him better,” said Hodge. “Everyone likes him, everyone wants to play with him. He makes big shots.
“Brandon Ayers does a little bit of everything. He’s 6-3, he can rebound, he can defend – does all the little things that make your team win.”
The Dragons open their 2006-07 season at home Wednesday, Nov. 1, against Southwestern Adventist.
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