Monticello boys basketball coach Bridge Tusler is looking forward to starting his second year at Monticello.
His assistant coaches are Cory Puppe, Nathan Rengel, Mike Gilbertson, Tyler Barker, and John Yunger. The team managers are Grace Smith and Macy Brooks.
Tusler recalled earning his first win with his Magic team last season. He’s thankful to be able to make more memories like that this season.
“The players surprised me by squirting water bottles at me after we beat Orono,” Tulser said. “It was our first win as a team and my first win ever as head coach. It was pretty fun that they wanted to celebrate that.”
The Monticello seniors and captains are Gus Hangsleben, Calvin Schmitz, Sam Valor, Henry Sawatzke, Mitchell Stocker, and Omarion Posey.
Last year Monticello went 16-14.
This year the team has a goal of staying healthy and to see improvement by the end of the season.
“We want to play the best basketball by the end of the season and stay safe,” Tusler said.
This season the roster looks a bit shorter than years past, but that won’t stop them Magic from competing.
“We are small this year and I see that as both a strength and a weakness,” Tusler said. “We are athletic and have multi-sport athletes which is a huge strength, but our weakness is size.”
Tusler didn’t have any season predictions because he expects it to be a roller coaster on both offense and defense.
“This season is probably the number one season I will ever be a part of where basketball x’s and o’s are my first thought or concern. I believe it will come down to match up.”
The Monticello boys basketball team faces St. Francis on Thursday, Jan. 14 on its home court.
“We are ready to compete,” Tusler said. “I expect a lot of learning to take place during those couple halves of hoops.”
Tusler is just thankful to be competing.
“It’s a great privilege and such a great reminder to be grateful for the time we have,” Tusler said. “We take.. Well, I take it for granted and this has been a humbling experience.”