Jaelen Ragsdale and Fred Lavender have been teammates for the Weston Ranch High Cougars basketball team for the past few years.
They’ll continue play alongside each other after this year.
Ragsdale’s history with newcomer Anthony Booker goes even further – they’ve played together since the sixth grade.
Booker is a 6-foot-10 center who previously played at Chavez High – he won’t be eligible to play for Weston Ranch until January – and can’t wait to play with new coach and teammates. “I really like the up-tempo game here,” he said.
On Wednesday, the three were joined together for National signing Day. This early Signing period for basketball was held at the Weston Ranch gymnasium in front of family, teammates, coaches and friends.
“This says a lot about Weston Ranch,” said Cougars coach Chris Teevan. “If you play here, we can make things happen.”
Ragsdale and Lavender signed on to play hoops for Stanislaus State, where Teevan also played for the Warriors. Booker committed to Cal State Monterey Bay.
“This day didn’t come easy,” said Ragsdale, who is uncertain of his college major.
He recalled all the extra time and effort he spent trying to improve his game. During the past two seasons, Ragsdale averaged 19 points per game and 1.9 assists.
It also comes as relief for him that the signing period is finally done. “I can relax and play more freely,” said Ragsdale.
Lavender is an all-around player, averaging 13.1 points, 2.1 assists, 4.6 rebounds and 1.5 steals last year.
Besides Ragsdale, he’s looking forward to playing with another former Cougar, Dylan Alexander, who transferred over from Casper College in Wyoming.
Lavender is leaning towards business as a major.
Booker is also looking forward to being around family in Monterey. His father was stationed there years ago and mother is from the area.
Booker is an outstanding student, maintaining a perfect 4.0 grade point average. He’s already selected a major, chemistry, with hopes of going to grad school and becoming a pharmacist.
At Chavez, Booker averaged 3.8 ppg, 3.5 rebounds, and 1.7 blocks.
“We’re excited to have Anthony in our program,” Teevan said.
To contact reporter Vince Rembulat, email firstname.lastname@example.org.