Coach Brian Beauchemin has won more than 20 games in seven of his eight seasons at Glendale College. But success might be harder to come by this season. Beauchemin said that the present team is the quickest he's ever coached. It's also one of the least experienced.
"Quickness is our strength," Beauchemin said. "Our lack of size is a definite problem."
Glendale's team is composed of 10 freshmen and five sophomores. And the Vaqueros' only returning regular, Geoff Foote, was a part-time starter. Foote, a 6-foot, 5-inch sophomore, shot 70% from the line and 50% from the field at the post position last season.
"He's the hardest working kid I've ever coached," Beauchemin said. "I think the other players look toward him for leadership. He's not a great verbal leader but he gets it done. He's really handled it well."
Beauchemin is hopeful that sophomores John Mickle and Bill Loska can take over some of the scoring responsibilities. Loska, a 6-4 guard, and Mickle, a 6-6 forward, have been given the green light to shoot from the three-point range. Mickle averaged 3.7 points a game and shot 70% from the line and 50% from the field last season.
"He's a good perimeter shooter," Beauchemin said. "He's going to have to become a little tougher and help us rebound."
Several freshmen could make an immediate impact. Twins Duayne and Dwight Davis, 6-3 forwards from Muir High, have good jumping ability and could help Glendale's rebounding effort. Matt Dyrek, a 6-7 post player from St. Francis, and 6-7 sophomore Ken Boldt have been strong under the basket. And Terrell Smith, a 5-10 guard, scored 15 points in a scrimmage earlier this season.
Glendale has, in the past, been a conference contender. The Vaqueros finished 20-10 last season and lost to Citrus College by one point in the first round of the state junior college playoffs.
Only two players return from last season's 10-14 team. Sylvia Lopez, Glendale's only returning starter, averaged nine points and five rebounds last season. The 5-5 guard will be the Vaqueros' playmaker and floor leader. Glendale will start four talented but untested freshman, first-year Coach Rocky Moore said. Dollie Lucero, a 5-9 forward, averaged 20 points and 10 rebounds and earned All-City honors at Marshall High last season. Lucero will be joined by Teresa McCauley, a 5-9 forward from Hoover High, and Debra Mejia, a 5-10 forward from Roosevelt High. Starting at guard will be 5-5 Sandra Melendez. Glendale, which will run a high-post, low-post offense, lacks height on the bench. Freshman Shelly Treat, a 5-10 forward from Holy Family High, is Glendale's tallest reserve but has been sidelined with a hyper-extended knee. The other three reserves are guards Jessica Palma (5-2 freshman), Liz Almeida (5-1 sophomore) and Vicky Merit (5-5 freshman).