Men’s Basketball: Hardrockers Ready to Compete in New Conference
The South Dakota School of Mines men’s basketball team is gearing up for the start of a new season and this year, the Hardrockers once again have something to play for.
After three years of playing an independent schedule without a conference affiliation, the School of Mines is set to begin its first year as a member of the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference.
That means the Hardrockers are eligible for the postseason and can make a run for a conference title.
SD Mines men’s basketball coach Jason Henry says, “We’re very excited to have that opportunity to one, once again compete for a, get to a tournament and compete for a championship. It’s kind of the number one thing. But playing Friday Saturday nights. If you go on the road and you get your butt beat, then you have a chance to come back on that Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and get better and work on some things.”
The Hardrockers are coming off of a tough season in which they finished the year with a 9-17 record.
In fact, the men’s basketball team is searching for its first winning season since 2011.
The Hardrockers lost five players from last year’s team including Andrew Rebol and Travis Schock, who were the second and third leading scorers on the team.
But Coach Henry feels he has players ready to step up and help fill the void left by those two players.
Jason Henry says, “With Konor Kulas, obviously a guy that averaged almost 17 points and 10 or 11 rebounds, that’s a great nucleus. But just the guys like Brian Orr and Jaisean that have gotten a year older. Had a lot of playing time last year. It’s going to be a big part of what we’re trying to do. Then probably our best guard we did red shirt last year with Jamall Taylor.”
The School of Mines opens the season this weekend by hosting Johnson and Wales Friday night and Presentation College on Saturday.