Letterman Magazine

Basketball

Sharpshooter: Avery Benson

The Springdale Har-Ber Wildcats have become one of the most consistent basketball teams in the state. Coach Scott Bowlin has led the Wildcats to several playoff appearances in recent years and is looking to take this years’ team to a state championship. The Wildcats have a talented group returning for the 2015 season. Avery Benson and J.P. Brandon return for another and they will be aided by transfers Tyler Garrett and Justin Smith for the upcoming season.

Last season, the Har-Ber Wildcats had an impressive showing, finishing with a 19-8 record. However, the Wildcats are in the same conference as Bentonville and Fayetteville, so they will have work to do in order to win the 7-A West Conference. Har-Ber has J.P. Brandon occupying the low post and, to many basketball observers, he is the best post player in the 7-A West. Avery Benson has no problem making the opposing team pay for spending too much time concentrating on Brandon.

Benson is drawing the attention of several college scouts. He already has an offer from University of Arkansas-Little Rock and is looking to bring in a few more during the course of the season. Benson is an accurate shooter and has the ability to get hot from 3-point-land and stay that way through the course of the game. Benson is continuously looking to improve upon his game. Avery has spent time during the offseason improving his ball handling and working on his shooting.

Heading into the start of the season, every team is anxious to demonstrate they have improved since last season. Har-Ber is ready to avenge last season’s loss to North Little Rock in the state playoffs. The Wildcats will get help from Tyler Garrett and Justin Smith. Both Smith and Garrett transferred from Springdale High School during the offseason and should provide a boost to the Wildcats.

The 2015 season has all the makings of being a big one for Har-Ber and Avery Benson. The Wildcats will open with North Little Rock on November 14 and it should be an excellent matchup. Fayetteville and Bentonville each appear on the schedule twice and those matchups will be key in determining playoff positions at the end of the season. Benson and Har-Ber have plenty of work and some tough games ahead but this should be an excellent season for both.

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