North Sand Mountain varsity boys head basketball coach Cole Hicks said his team had four objectives for its trip to the Alabama Gulf Coast last week.

The first was to play good competition and improve as a team, with the second was to build team unity, while the third and fourth were to “eat good” and “have fun.”

“Everything we came here to do,” Hicks said, “we did.”

On the court, the Bison enjoyed a 6-1 run record during play in the Foley High School Team Camp.

NSM posted wins over large school teams, defeating Class 3A Bayside Academy, 4A Escambia County, 5A Satsuma, 6A Robertsdale and 7A Foley. The Bison’s lone loss was to Gulf Breeze (Florida).

“We wanted to play these big schools, face athletic teams and see where we need to be at (come the season),” said Hicks, who is entering his third season at his alma mater.”

NSM is coming off of a 20-8 season in which it won a regular- season area championship and advanced to the Class 2A Northeast Regional. 

The Bison lost six seniors, including second-team all-state point guard Hunter Vest. But NSM returns leading scorer Russ Marr and a host of players that played important minutes off the bench last season. NSM carried 12 players to the team camp, although one was unable to play due to injury.

“It was good for us,” Hicks said. “We played competition and got better. That’s what you want in the summer.”

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