Volume 92, Issue 36

Friday, November 6, 1998

bigger than the post


SPORTS
 

Pair of Hawks soar at Western


©Tom Baumgartner/Gazette

HOOP DREAMS A PLENTY. Peter Kratz and Stephan Barrie have defected to the Mustang men's basketball team after playing for the Laurier Hawks in an effort to boost Western's three-point game.

BY ALAN RUSSETTE

Gazette Staff

The Mustang men's basketball team is back on the court for the pre-season schedule with a pair of former Laurier Golden Hawks adding depth to an already strong line-up.

Peter Kratz spent four years at Laurier, earning an honours degree in business and spent a year in the work force before being accepted to the faculty of education at Western to finish off his five years of eligibility.

Meanwhile, former Hawk teammate, Stephan Barrie completed a degree in French and geography at Laurier before taking a postgraduate marketing course from Humber College and a year off. Now Barrie is completing his honours at Western, in the hopes of attending teacher's college next year.

Both will be getting time off the bench and head coach Craig Boydell is confident each will contribute as they become accustomed to the Western system. "They each do quite different kinds of things well. Hopefully as things evolve, Peter will be a guy who can give us another kind of scoring punch. We've already got some pretty deep three-point shooters, but he would be a guy who could spot up and knock down [three-point shots]," Boydell said. Reflecting on his other transfer student, Boydell had similarly high praise.

"Stephan Barrie has played well for us already. He's very focused on defence and at the same time he's given us bursts of offence."

Both new Mustangs acknowledged there will be a transition period as they make the adjustments to fit Western's style of play, but both feel pleased with their progress. "Every time you go to a new system or you have a new coach or new guys, it's a learning experience," Barrie said.

"But I think there are a lot of signs that things are gelling together with the team from a player-to-player perspective, as well as with the coaching."

Kratz noticed several differences between the Mustang philosophy and the system he played at Laurier, most notably the focus on defence. "Defence comes to my mind right away. At Laurier, defence was one of the furthest things from a priority, but here it's number 1," Kratz said. "It's great to see."

"At Laurier we had an offence that was entirely geared for three-point shooters," Barrie added. "We come over here and we have a variety. We have guys who are excellent in the post, we have three point shooters, we have slashers. It's a more complete look at an offensive system here whereas at Laurier, it was very one-dimensional."

The two also noticed a sense of pride and tradition associated with the Mustang basketball program, which was often lacking at Laurier.

Kratz, Barrie and the rest of the Mustangs will continue to prepare for the regular season this weekend at the University of New Brunswick tournament.


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Copyright © The Gazette 1998