BROOTEN– After reaching the Section 5A-West champion, the Belgrade-Brooten-Elrosa kids basketball team aims to roll it back this winter season.

With four starters back from 2019-20 and another starting-caliber gamer back from injury, it’s an obtainable goal for the Jaguars after a 14-15 mark last season.

” As a coaching staff, we are extremely thrilled for this season,” said BBE head coach Chris Anderson, who heads into his seventh year. “We have an enjoyable group of players returning.”

While losing All-Central Minnesota Conference first-teamer Jackson Peter (12.6 points, 7.0 rebounds per video game) to graduation is a blow, the Jaguars have plenty of experience back on the court. After leading the group in scoring at 13.6 points per game, sophomore Kaden Pieper is back. A 6-foot-2 forward, Pieper earned first-team All-Central Minnesota honors after averaging 13.6 points, 4.6 rebounds, 2.3 helps and 1.2 takes per game. A second-team All-Central Minnesota select in 2019-20, junior guard Will VanBeck (6.8 ppg, 3.9 apg, 2.4 rpg) returns to the starting lineup together with senior citizens Ryan Schwinghammer (9.0 ppg, 4.7 rpg) and Andrew Weller (1.6 ppg).

The biggest addition for BBE is the return of 6-4 junior guard/forward Ashton Dingmann, who missed all of his sophomore season due to injury. In 2018-19, Dingmann averaged 16.9 points and 6.3 rebounds per game while making All-Central Minnesota first-team honors.

” One of our strengths must be our depth,” Anderson said. “This should create competitors within our team, which will produce energetic and competitive practices. Our goal is to take the energy and competitive drive from practice and use it to video games.”

The Jaguars will aim to get the season off on the right foot Friday, Jan. 15 when they host Maple Lake in the season opener.

“We are thrilled for the journey ahead,” Anderson stated.