Frankee Avalos has a clear vision of the program he wants to build at Bartlett High.
“When you’ve been around success for so long, you want that to be a part of everything you touch,” Avalos told Texas Scorecard after taking over as head coach of the boys’ basketball team this season. “We’re looking forward to building a top-level program.”
Avalos comes to Bartlett after several seasons as an assistant at his Reagan County alma mater, where he worked under longtime coach Ken Campbell.
“That experience definitely gave me the confidence to take this next step,” Avalos said. “We want to build a program like Reagan, while bringing our own style to it.”
Junior guard Daniel Juarez is the lone returning player from a team that graduated eight seniors last year, leaving Avalos to preach patience and demand togetherness from his young team.
“We’re working hard and getting better every day,” he said. “We just have to learn how to finish games. We’ve had tough competition against bigger schools, but in our last five games we’ve had a chance.”
The 2-6 Bulldogs are led by the speedy Juarez, averaging 17 points per game.
“He’s our leader and he knows what to expect at this level,” Avalos added.
Meanwhile, freshman swingman Javiere Polynice is learning fast. The 6-foot-1 slasher is averaging 10 points and turning heads almost every game.
“He’s probably our best basketball player, but he doesn’t have the most experience and is still learning,” Avalos said. “This is an entirely new system for him, but I love the way he’s always looking to attack.”
The Bulldogs will compete in the Covington Tournament this month before embarking on a stretch of four of six games at home, a stretch Avalos is hoping will hope settle his young team.
“We’re all growing together, but there’s no question about who we want to be,” he said.