Fairfield Ledger
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Neighbors Growing Together | Jul 28, 2014

Trojans boys prepare for Fort Madison, Danville

By ALLYUS FRITZ/Ledger sports editor | Jan 09, 2014

The Trojans invited mean friends over to play.

The Fairfield boys’ basketball team will be facing Fort Madison on Friday and Danville Saturday. Fort Madison is undefeated thus far, while Danville is attempting to continue the excellence they have exhibited in recent seasons. Danville only has one loss on the year after two straight seasons of barely missing out on state championships.

How do the Trojans plan on defending their home court and their 5-3 record?

“We have to be sound defensively, force teams to take jump shots and play good team defense,” Fairfield coach Tyler Miklo said. “We must take care of the ball and do a better job of rebounding to be competitive in either game.”

Guard play will be essential to these two matchups. Nagel David and Miles Wentzien, both over 6-foot tall, lead a Bloodhound attack that is averaging 56 points per game. That may not seem like much, but the defense is only giving up 45 per game, which would explain the 6-0 record.

Danville no longer has the Soukup twins, who were the main cogs in the team’s state tournament runs. The Bears now rely on the play of Mason Speer and Conner Hoelzen. Miklo knows how important perimeter play will be to both games.

“Both teams have tremendous guard play which will be a challenge for us defensively, but we are capable of going smaller to help guard the excellent guards that both teams have,” Miklo said.

Going smaller will mean increased playing time for senior Jordan Whitney and sophomore Jordan Reid, both of whom have played important roles in Fairfield’s strong start to the season. Whitney has made timely free throws and took an important charge in the Trojans’ victory over Albia. Reid’s best game was Saturday’s win over Mediapolis. He led the Trojans in points with 17.

Fairfield has tried to channel its focus during practice this week.

“We spent a lot of time working on handling pressure and attacking the pressure to get us easy looks,” Miklo said.

Miklo and the team are confident in their ability to challenge these two strong teams. The challenge begins Friday night.

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