JUCO basketball: Warriors tip off preseason hoops

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Oct. 14—OTTUMWA — The preseason slate for the 2021-22 Indian Hills men's basketball program is underway.

The Warriors opened play at Fort Worth in the Dallas Blowout Jamboree, playing three games on Friday at the Game On Sports Complex. The three-game schedule for the Warriors was part of a 90-game lineup over the course of the weekend featuring some of the top National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) programs.

Teams from 12 states, including five of the final eight programs from last year's national tournament, appeared in front of four-year recruiters. IHCC head men's basketball coach Hank Plona sees the preseason trips as an opportunity to build as a team.

"I always think multiple day trips are a good thing in the preseason," Plona said. "We're able to spend some time with each other and continue to grow as a group."

The opponents for the Warriors featured three competitive programs. Indian Hills took on Grayson College, a team that went 19-3 in the competitive NJCAA Region V last year, defending NJCAA Division I national champion Coffeyville Community College and national tournament qualifier Salt Lake Community College.

"We have 13 healthy bodies and I am looking forward to seeing everyone in game competition," Plona said. "Our goal is to play as hard as possible, and try to play as smart and together as we can in early October while doing that. If we compete and play hard, good things will always happen for us."

The jamboree was the start to a challenging preseason schedule for the Warriors. Indian Hills will head to Florida this weekend, competing in the All-American Jamboree in Orlando, giving IHCC another opportunity to showcase their talents against top competition.

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