The boys’ basketball team suffered its greatest loss at the end of the 2010-2011 season with the sudden passing of assistant coach Ken Brackett in March.
Nearly nine months later, the Warriors will dedicate their 2011-2012 basketball season to their coach and friend in hopes of improving on last year’s 11-9 record.
Medfield’s uniforms will don the patch “KB” in memory of Brackett.
“We are playing with a purpose this year, even more so … we are thinking of our good friend, assistant coach Ken Brackett, who we lost in the off-season,” said Medfield head coach Herb Grace. “We are going to wear the KB patches on our uniforms.”
Returning to the Medfield bench as assistant coach this season is Mike Mason, who has 15 years worth of coaching experience with Grace.
“Mike Mason is going to be helping us out,” Grace said. “He does a tremendous job and this is going to be a big year for us, we are looking forward to it.”
Medfield opens the season Dec. 13 at home against Norton. Tip-off is 6:30 p.m.
“We start with a tough Norton team coming into our gym who beat us last year in the last league game of the season,” Grace said. “If we can get off to a good start and win that game and build some momentum and then we got to go to Hopkinton, who was the defending league champ, so we start off with the iron right away. You got to come to play every night in this league.”
Here’s a capsule look at the 2011-2012 team:
2010-2011 Record: 11-10, 11-9
Tri-Valley League Finish: 11-9 (fourth).
How 2010-2011 Ended: Lost, 76-70 to Scituate in the first round of the MIAA Division 2 South Sectional tournament. Medfield was the 14th seed in the tournament.
Head Coach: Herb Grace
Captains: Tom Conlon, Sam Tawa.
Key players: Tom Conlon, Sam Tawa, Jonny McCarthy, Drew Shea, Bobby Hunter, John Averill and John Zimmerman.
Key losses: Ben Coutinho, Jake Bankert.
Season Opener: Tuesday, Dec. 13 vs. Norton, 6:30 p.m.
Notes: Grace named Hopkinton as the front-runner in the highly competitive Tri-Valley League to begin the season based on who’s returning to the program and the Hillers being the defending league champions. He also shared what he expects from his team in Tuesday’s season opener.
“We are going to open, play good, hard, tough man to man defense,” Grace said. “We’ve been mixing in some zones. We are a team that will adjust our defense to what the personnel is to the other teams. [Norton] has a couple of guys back that we are aware of that we saw play over the summer. The first game is always kind of the strangest because you haven’t seen them play and they haven’t seen us play so it will be a very interesting matchup. Should be a good game.”