The Winslow Bulldogs basketball teams opened their 2005-06 season last night (Tuesday) against the Holbrook Roadrunners in a non-conference encounter. The Bulldogs feature nine returning lettermen and four returning starters including one part time starter. They also have four players who have earned state or regional honors returning off a team that won 22 games and lost only five.
The Bulldogs won 12 of 14 3A North Region contests and took both the regular season and the tournament championships. A 60-56 upset loss to the Seton Catholic Sentinels in the first round of the Arizona State 3A Conference Tournament ended Winslow's season.
Coach Charles Gover will be entering his 10th season with a superb 159-89 career record. Winslow has a new set of assistant coaches in varsity assistant Rudy Sells, assistant and junior varsity coach Steve Henling and assistant and freshman coach Ricky Greer.
The Bulldog will possibly be without the services of Payne and Stago if the Winslow High School football team is still in action after Friday's state semi-final game against Blue Ridge. At best, the pair will have only had one day of practice time.
Winslow's second game of the season will also be at home against the Blue Ridge Yellowjackets on Tuesday, Nov. 29. After that, the Bulldogs will host the Cake Chevrolet Shootout on Dec. 1, 2 and 3.