Pictured is the Malden Green Wave varsity boys basketball team.
Unlike many area coaches, Sokolov can't get a good start on his team's practice until football season is over. Thus, his men have only recently started preparations for their season.
Today was your third practice. What are you seeing from your players?
Sokolov answered: "Right now, in my opinion, the varsity is not looking too bad. The jayvee is really, really rusty. I've got a lot of freshmen... got a lot of catching up on speed to do. There's a lot of slow guys. We're working a lot on running and fitness, trying to get their fitness level up. A lot of football players did miss the first week, which was pretty much our conditioning week.
"Varsity's not doing too bad but there's still some rust there, a lot of missed layups but we're getting there. It's a long road ahead of us. We've got about 2 1/2 weeks before the first game. Hopefully they'll get there... where we want them to be."
Sokolov is pleased with the program he's used in the past. When asked if there is anything he has changed since last year, he answered simply, "Not a thing."
Is there anybody in particular you think fans need to keep an eye on?
"Probably Cortez (Dobbins) and, of course, Romello (McCoy)," answered Sokolov. "Those guys are going to be getting it to a different level. They're real fast, real aggressive. Malik Perkins has gotten much better at the point guard position. Then we have some additions this year that will be a substantial help."
How many seniors do you have?
"I have five right now. A couple of them didn't play last year, but decided to come out this year. They played JV, but they didn't play varsity."
Malden's senior players are Malik Perkins, Dajuan Criglar, Romello McCoy, Mitchell Coleman, and Kevin Farr.
Is there anything you'd like to add that you think they fans would like to know or that you'd like the fans to know?
"I hope everybody supports us this year and comes out to see more of our games, away and home. We have a lot of home games this year. We're hosting the conference tournament and district tournament. That would be a really, really nice thing to have fans come out and support our team."
As mentioned earlier, the Malden men will begin their season by taking part in the Oran Tournament, starting on Nov. 26 at Oran.
Pictured is the Malden Green Wave junior varsity boys basketball team.