With both of their season-leading scorers being juniors, the Bradshaw Christian Pride boys’ basketball program has seen a talented group this season that bodes well for the future.
David Schuhmeier and Ethan Patterson have led the Pride in team scoring this year, with several senior players, including Patterson’s cousin Jaylen, anchoring the team.
“David and Ethan, they’re both juniors, which is exciting as a coach having them come back,” Pride head coach Alex Williams said on May 14. “They’re just ultra-talented and they work hard all the time, and David, he’s just non-stop and that’s why you love a kid like that. Ethan is just ultra-skilled and finds a way to make it happen. He’s been doing that all year.”
Ethan Patterson leads his team with an average of 18.1 points per game, Schuhmeier averages 13.9 points per game.
“They work really well together, play well together, they’re best friends. It’s nice having that camaraderie so I’m excited to have them back,” Williams said.
Jaylen Patterson, who has been a leader for the Pride both on the court and on the football field over the past few years, leads the team in rebounds and steals and had an average of 13 points per game through their May 21 game against El Dorado.
Williams lamented losing Patterson to graduation after the COVID-19 shortened season, which consisted of just 14 games and no postseason.
“It’s a bummer that we don’t get to have playoffs or anything. With Jaylen, it’s a bummer. It is what it is. He’s worked so hard his whole career,” Williams said.
In the Pride’s 74-73 win over El Dorado, Ethan Patterson led all scorers with 22 points, Jaylen Patterson scored 14 and Schuhmeier added 12 to help power the Pride in their road win, which was their third in the Sierra Valley Conference. Tyree Brown, also a junior, led the team with 10 rebounds against the Cougars.
The win was their seventh overall; the Pride went on to play Galt and Monterey Trail this week to wrap up the year.
After losing a 65-52 game to Union Mine on a night where they had led in the first half and tied the game with approximately three minutes left in the third quarter, Williams noted that the team has focused on having a defensively strong start and that, overall, the Pride has improved in that area.
“For us, it’s always going to start on the defensive side and that’s what we preach every day,” Williams said. “That’s what we care about and finishing every possession with a rebound. We struggled to do that today, but I think we’re getting better.”
Coming off a year in which they reached the Sac-Joaquin Section D V Championship game before playing in the third round of the CIF Nor Cal playoffs, the Pride remain focused on the basics as they look ahead to next season and, hopefully a return to the playoffs.
“We just preach hard work and just always play hard, and we have a good group of kids that does that. That’s what we hold our hat on. Work hard, play hard,” Williams said.