Green and Bulldogs looking to break through

Kyle Riviere
Coach Green says Ascension Catholic's backcourt will be their greatest strength this season. Photo by Chuck Montero.

It's a new year for Ascension Catholic basketball, and they're hoping their new head coach will lead them over the first-round hump so they can compete for a championship.

The Bulldogs have brought in Kylon Green as their new head man, and he is eccited about the opportunity to lead his new team. He'll be looking to improve a squad that had their ups and their downs last year.

They began the 2014-15 season with a stellar 9-2 record, but they could only finish 4-7 down the stretch. Six of those losses came in the very competitive District 8-1A.

This season, they'll make the move to District 6-1A, and the competition will be just as fierce. They will now have to joust with powers like Southern Lab and Kentwood.

Overall, Ascension Catholic finished the regular season 16-11 and entered the playoffs as the No. 18 seed before falling to 15th-seeded West St. John.

In order to break through that first-round playoff barrier, Coach Green will be bringing a new style of play to his team.

"We're going to be transitioning to an up-tempo attack," Green said. "We're going to increase our ball-pressure and amp up the defensive intensity and then get out in transition on offense."

This philosophy goes perfectly with the personnel the Bulldogs return.

They have a tremendous backcourt that is highlighted by the explosive Kaleb Winchester, along with Kebori Hunter and Jacoby Stewart. Green is expecting big things from all three players.

"Our strength is definitely going to be our guard play. We have some very talented guards that are good ball-handlers, and they all have the ability to shoot," Green said.

Winchester will be the catalyst for Ascension Catholic. He enters the season on pace to break the school's record for most points all time--which was set by Lane Frey back in 2000.

Winchester has certainly made an impression on his new head coach.

"He really makes us go. He's going to be our primary ball-handler this year. He's extremely unselfish and a great leader for us," Green said. "He gives the guys energy, and we're going to go as he goes. That was the first thing I noticed when I took this job and we began practicing. He works hard every single day."

It will be a tough road for Ascension Catholic. Along with the brutal new district, they'll play non-district games against Zachary, Plaquemine, West St. John and St. James

Coach Green has liked what he has seen thus far. He thinks his team has the potential to do big things in 2015-16.

"We're going to have to get tough mentally, and the guys are going to have to buy into the new system," Green said. "I think we're ready to take that next step after making it to the playoffs last year and playing really well. We're just going to have to put in the extra work and take it. Nothing is given; everything is earned."