2019-20 Boys Basketball Preview

The Trojans look to improve this basketball season.


Mia Trotter

Tyler Moen goes to grab the basketball. Moen has been a varsity player since his freshman year.

Connor Church, Editor

The 2019-20 boys basketball season will be here soon. The Trojans are coming off of a 9-12 season. The team graduated seven players in 2019–Chase Mullenix, Logan Reilly, Cooper Leonard, Nathan Behrends, Jalen Petersen, Sam Granner, and Zade Niklasen. This year, Atlantic returns three seniors and five juniors to the varsity lineup. Bradley Dennis, Tyler Moen, and Nile Petersen are the returning seniors. Craig Alan Becker, Skyler Handlos, Grant Sturm, Ethan Williams, and Garrett Reynolds will return to the court for the class of 2021.

Mullenix led the Trojans in scoring last season with 319 points. He averaged 17 points per game. Right behind Mullenix was Moen, with 287 total points. This averaged out to 13 points per game. While Mullenix hit the most threes for the Trojans, Handlos was solid from behind the arc, splashing in 24. Offensively, the duo of Moen and Handlos will likely lead the way for Atlantic.

On defense, Handlos had 30 steals, the most of the returning players. Moen was right behind him with 28. The senior also had 21 blocks last season. When it comes to rebounds, the top two players are gone. Moen posted the best numbers amongst this year’s squad, with 123 rebounds.

The Trojans have a tough schedule coming up this season. Their first contest is against Exira-EHK in a Hall of Pride scrimmage to be hosted at AHS on Monday, Nov. 25. Atlantic starts the competitive season at home against the Creston Panthers. Their first road game of the season is against the Glenwood Rams.

New opponents for Atlantic include Exira-EHK, Saydel, and Maryville. To make room on the schedule for these contests, the Trojans aren’t playing Gilbert or Treynor.

This year, the boys will play Des Moines Lincoln at Wells Fargo Arena. Atlantic will make the trek on Saturday, Feb. 1.

The final regular-season game for Atlantic is against Denison-Schleswig, on their turf, on Thursday, Feb. 20.

The Trojans have a lot of goals for the season. Becker said, “I just want the team to look back at the end of the season feeling proud about how we did. I want us to compete and play together, regardless of our record.” Similarly, Sturm said, “I want us to have a winning record, and win a playoff game.”

Coach Jeff Ebling commented on the season. “I have learned to focus on now, and not the future. Each practice, we need to get better as a team. Doing the little things correctly will allow us to see success on game nights. As of right now, our goal is to go 1-0 after the Creston game.”

Ebling doesn’t look too far into the future, but wants his team to take one game at a time.

The Trojans’ first game is on Tuesday, Dec. 3 against the Creston Panthers at home. Tip-off is scheduled for 7 p.m.