By TAYLOR DENMAN firstname.lastname@example.org
College of Coastal Georgia men's basketball announced its 2017 recruiting class Monday.
The class of nine players includes four freshmen and five upperclassmen, including five players with ties to Georgia.
In the program's first season in in the Sun Conference, head coach Jesse Watkins said he looks forward to some of his recruits racking up some valuable minutes in the fall.
"Our focal point was finding guys who could come in and contribute right away," Watkins said when talking about the incoming class. "We have guys we know we can depend on and guys coming to us from winning programs. These guys will also give us depth and allow us to keep players in their true positions. We made a push for experienced guys to go with the experienced players we have coming back and also added the true freshmen to the mix."
The freshman class joining Coastal includes center Lee Green from Jesuit High (Fla.), guard Tyrese Sandgren from Blufton High (S.C.), guard Kindu Hamilton Jr. from Creekside High and guard Vidmantas Kaciuska from AIG Prep in Lithuania.
Hamilton averaged 13.8 points and 6.4 rebounds as a senior under former CCGA player Greg Freeman at Creekside.
"He has a scorer's mentality and will come with the same energy and determination that his head coach had here as a player for Coastal Georgia," Watkins said. "He's a shooting guard who knows how to come off screens and can score the ball. He can create his own shot also, which makes him tougher to defend on the perimeter. He just needs to get stronger, so he will be ready for the physicality each time we play."
CCGA's three sophomores include forwards Donovan Brown, DeShaun Wilkenson, Elijah Wade and Logan Ballard. Guard Hayden Goins is the lone junior transfer from Randolph College.
Photo by Bobby Haven of The Brunswick News
Coastal Georgia basketball coach Jesse Watkins gives instruction during a drill in preparation for the team's game against Webber International.