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High School Spotlight Week 3: Riverside Poly

By Scott Martin , 09/11/17, 8:15AM PDT


            The Riverside Poly Bears under Coach Yancy Dodson and Assistant Coach/ West Coast Elite Under Armour Assistant Director Justin Downer are poised to make a deeper run in the CIF Southern Section this year. The Poly Bears finished the 2016/2017 season with a 19-11 record and a first round CIF loss to Kaiser. The Bears are returning West Coast Elite Under Armour players 2019 Trent Thornton, 2019 Lavele Johnson, 2018 Tobin Kund, and 2020 Lamont Butler in what will be a loaded team that expects to dominate in the Ivy league. The development of Thornton, Johnson, Kund, and Butler has been key in the programs evolution as they are going to rely heavily on their Big 4 to carry the load offensively.

Assistant Coach Justin Downer on the Bears upcoming season, “We are led by two seniors that have been with us since we started here at Riverside Poly, along with returning our starting five after a season where we experienced a lot of adversity last year. We feel we are battle tested, and our guys are all in on each other. We return two All-League players in Lamont Butler and Tobin Kund which is a huge blessing to have two guys that have showed they are capable of being amongst the best in our league. Our league has produced the last two CIF 1AA champions in Rancho Verde and JW North, so there are no easy nights but we feel like we are ready to compete at that level and have success. We’re excited to have the opportunity to compete for a CIF championship this year with a combination of talent and experience.”

Senior Tobin Kund on the upcoming season,” Here at Riverside Poly we have six returners who are poised for a big season. Out of the six returners three of us are seniors and we are working hard to lead our team to a historic season. I like where we are headed and the whole team is pouring into each other and we all know what it takes to be successful.”

Lavele Johnson on this seasons expectation, “We pour in all spring, summer, and fall so we can make a push during the winter. It’s the only way for us to see our goals come to fruition. Got to keep pouring in to reach the end goal!’

Freshmen Lamont Butler on the Poly Bears upcoming season, “We are the underdogs and no one expects us to be good. Every day we deny to be outworked by anyone. This season will be special if we just trust the process.”

Trent Thornton on the off season and the Poly Bears upcoming season, “Competing is what we do, this upcoming season that will show on the court. We have a young team, but filled with talent and dedication. We took the off season very seriously so when it starts to count we will be prepared.”

The Riverside Poly Bears will take the floor this fall at West Coast Elites Attitude of Gratitude Invitational at The Map in Garden Grove, California.