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Untested Blue Hawk boys to begin play in Libby


November 29, 2018

John Hamilton

PASSING IT ON - Hawk junior Ryan Schraeder and his Thompson Falls teammates, along with the Lady Hawks, will tip off season play at Libby Saturday. All Sanders County prep teams will begin season action this week, please see stories for details.


That one-word answer from coach Jake Mickelson to the question of how the Thompson Falls boys will look in basketball this season pretty much sums up the situation for the Blue Hawks.

With first team District 7B all-conference picks Danny Hoisington (who was also named All-State B), Payton Frields and Nathan Thibeault, and second team selection Dylan Beckman all gone to graduation, it will now fall on last year's role players and other up-and-coming ballers to lead the Blue Hawks this season.

The Hawks will open season play Saturday with a non-conference game, part of a boy-girl doubleheader, at Class A Libby Saturday.

Mickelson does not try to gloss over where his Hawks are right now team-wise.

"We have a lot of new faces this season, we obviously lost a lot of talented players off last year's team," he said. "It will take us a little bit until we find our footing but we are going to get better as the season goes on."

Mickelson said that although a lot of the talent has left the building, the Hawks still have some players left over from last year to build on.

Leading that list are seniors Grant Lundberg and Riley Riffle, juniors Ryan Schraeder and Trey Fisher and sophomore Kade Pardee. Juniors Ethan Brown and Nate Wilhite, sophomore Justin Morgan and freshman Nathan Schraeder also figure to be in the playing mix, Mickelson said.

Espirit de corps has been very good in practice, he added. "These kids seem to have good attitudes," Mickelson offered. "We are getting along good and everybody is anxious to get playing."

The non-conference matchup with Libby Saturday will be a good team and place to start out with.

"Libby looks to have a solid squad, this will be a good test for us to see where we are at," Mickelson said.


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