Long-time Bentworth boys basketball coach Bob Kennedy has almost seen it all during his tenure at the helm of the program.
He has taken the program to the playoffs countless times, including a six-year run from 2007-12, and won a pair of section titles in 2010 and 2012, with the 2010 team going undefeated in section play.
But with all of his accomplishments, very rarely has he lost as much experience to graduation as he did after the 2017-18 season ended.
“We graduated seven seniors, including all five starters,” Kennedy said. “We are returning five players from last year’s team with experience, but it was limited playing time.”
Despite that, Kennedy expects the team to play hard.
“My expectation for the team this season is for us to be respectable,” he said.
Junior Shawn Dziak and a pair of seniors, Jacob Burke and Mike Vittone, saw time a year ago.
“They have the most experience of the guys coming back,” Kennedy said. “But it was limited varsity experience.”
Junior Cameron Bell and sophomore Mason Gurewicz are the other two players who saw a little varsity time last season.
Kennedy mentioned three newcomers.
“I am looking for Nathan Doyle, Nathan Menzer and Tucker McMurray to contribute once they develop into their roles,” Kennedy said.
The Bearcats are in Section 2-AA along with Brentwood, California, Carmichaels, Chartiers-Houston, Jeannette and Serra Catholic.
“Brentwood and Serra Catholic will be solid and Jeannette is a tough stop for any team,” Kennedy said. “Chartiers-Houston, Carmichaels and California are always top-notch programs.”
Bentworth opens its season on Dec. 11 when it hosts Avella.