By Amanda Perkins (For OzarksSportsZone.com)
Renowned coach Rod Gorman enters his third year at Houston and begins this season with experienced lettermen who have bought into the work of building a successful program.
Last year’s team won seven games compared to the previous year’s five, and the Tigers return seven experienced players.
Senior Paydon Dixon is the eldest member of the team and its probable leader. He led the Tigers in steals last season and has worked to increase his 7.3 points per game.
Clayton Moore is the first of many returning juniors. He was an all-conference team member and Houston’s leading scorer in 2017, averaging 12.4 points per game. Coach Gorman said Moore is already a threat from behind the arc and has put in work in the off-season to expand his game.
“Moore makes us go on offense,” Gorman said.
Classmate Kyler Ramsey helped his team to a 6-4 start, but the Tigers only won one game all season following his injury.
“He is the glue to our team and needs to stay healthy for us to be successful,” said Coach Gorman.
Dakota Burtchett’s 6’3” frame and athleticism helped him to 3.9 rebounds per game, and he started in more than 20 contests. Nick Zamarron will be a new face on the varsity court, a transfer from Texas last season, and the aggressive guard could show up as the defensive stopper. Jaekan Moss, 6’2”, will play his second season of varsity and is improving in scoring and rebounding. Connor Wilson, Dalton Dzurick, Tristan Leir, and Kyle Mills round out the junior class.
Ty Franklin is the lone sophomore, a 6’4” versatile player who will give the team depth.
“Our bigs are much improved,” said Coach Gorman. “We will be better on offense, defense, and rebounding. They have put many hours in during the off-season and want to be successful.”
Houston will face their first test at Rolla November 17 against Ellington.