2020-21 Winter Preview: Norwood Boys Basketball

By Chris Parker

Norwood boys basketball made an eight-game jump in wins from two years ago to last year. The Pirates finished with an overall record of 18-11.

The big improvement came thanks to the team becoming better at finishing games according to head coach Shane Chadwell.

“I feel like we were able to finish games last season better than the previous year. Hitting free-throws, understanding how time can be our advantage, and scoring helped improve our record,” Chadwell said.

Junior Garrett Davault returns this year. He has been a star in his first two years for Norwood averaging 23.1 points per game as a freshman and 21.4 points per game as a sophomore. Davault is already over 1,000 points scored in his career.

“Garrett can score. He has been a gym rat for years. He puts the time in the gym and has an act for putting the ball in the hole,” Chadwell said. “He has matured physically. He is about 6’2 now and has put on some muscle. Garrett is able to shot off the dribble better and get his shots off quicker than the past years. I expect Garrett to be more of a vocal leader. He has to get his teammates involved. The last two years, he has been our main threat and people start focusing on that. Although we will still look for him to score, his assist has to go up for us to be good.”

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Junior Justin Chadwell has shown marked improvement in the off-season. His 2.4 point-per-game average should only go up this year.

“He has grown to be about 6’2 and has worked extremely hard in the weight room,” Coach Chadwell said. “His physical play has been what we have lacked in years past. He has worked in the off-season and developed serval post moves. We will look for him to be a big factor around the rim.”

Senior Jalen Drake and junior Max McGowan will share time at the point this year. They both averaged right around six points per game last year.

“We need both of these guys to contribute more on the offensive end. They are both unselfish with the ball, but we will look to them for more scoring,” Chadwell said.

Gavin McGraw returns as the team’s second-leading scorer after he averaged 9.3 points per game. Jacob Sinning led the team in rebounds in 2019 at 5.6 per game. Zack Black is a senior guard that will provide length. Fellow senior Josh Bradshaw shoots the three-pointer well.

Dillon Bennett is a sophomore guard that could see some varsity minutes.

“We are going to have some depth. We could play seven or eight guys every night as we will look to get up and guard people. If everyone buys in and accepts their role, with one common goal, we will be fine,” Chadwell said. “Our goal is to make our defense create our offense. For us, to be our best, we have to be able to guard in the half court and be lock down defenders. We have to get stops late in the game, but if we can do that I think we will be alright.”

Norwood opens the season on Nov. 20 at Sparta.

“I have high expectations,” Chadwell said. “Coming off an 18-11 year and coming up just short of a district championship, our kids are eager to get the job done. We return almost everyone and have grown mentally and physically. Although district assignment has yet been decided, I feel we have a good chance to do some big things this year.”

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