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Thursday, 16 August 2012 17:26

Coach Dooley Signs First Class

Julian Mills joins the Wildcats on head coach Sean Dooley's first recruiting class Julian Mills joins the Wildcats on head coach Sean Dooley's first recruiting class

BALDWIN CITY, Kan. – First-year head men’s basketball coach Sean Dooley has signed five new student-athletes for his first recruiting class at Baker University and adds depth to a team that qualified for the 2012 Buffalo Funds-NAIA Men’s Basketball National Championship Tournament for the first time since 1941.

 “We are very pleased with the level of student-athletes that decided to join our program,” said Dooley. “We believe this year’s class addresses our needs for this season, and will be great foundational pieces for the future of Baker basketball. This group should fit in well with our 10 returner’s and we look forward to getting the process started. 

The class of five new Wildcats includes two freshmen, one sophomore and two juniors.

Julian Mills (5-11, Jr., Point Guard, Fort Scott Community College, Fort Scott, Kan.)

Mills is a speedy point guard who averaged 10 points along with four rebounds, four assists and two steals per game last season.

“Julian is a true point guard,” said Dooley. “He possesses excellent quickness, passing and defensive skills and is a natural leader. I expect him to fit right in and be an impact player this season.” 

Cody Sunderland (5-11, Fr., Guard, Jayhawk-Linn HS, Pleasanton, Kan.)

Sunderland was a three-sport athlete at Jayhawk-Linn high school, lettering in football, basketball and baseball. Was a first-team all-conference basketball player last season and averaged nine points, seven rebounds and two assists per game.

“Cody is a talented athlete that will greatly improve his game now that he has chosen to solely play basketball,” said Dooley. “His best basketball is definitely in front of him and I’m glad to have him be a part of our program for the next four years.”

Carson Sonnenburg (6-4, Fr., Forward, Althoff Catholic HS, Belleville, Ill.)

Sonnenburg was a two-sport athlete in high school, lettering in football and basketball. After graduation, Sonnenburg spent one season on the football team at Southern Illinois-Carbondale. He didn’t see action on the field and decided to take his talents back to basketball and signed with the Wildcat basketball program.

His senior season, the 6-4 forward averaged 18 points and 13 rebounds per game. He also played basketball for the St. Louis Eagles AAU team, in which he was teammates with Bradley Beal, formerly of the University of Florida and 2012 first-round NBA draft pick of the Washington Wizards and current University of Kansas basketball player Ben McLemore.

“Carson plays much bigger then his 6’4 frame and is a great rebounder and scorer,” said Dooley. “He has a special way of getting to the basket and we hope he will be a productive scorer for us and we’re very excited to see what the future holds.”

EJ Carter (6-4, So., Small Forward, Lewis & Clark CC, Edwardsville, Ill.)

Carter is a solid three-point shooter who averaged three points and two rebounds per game at Lewis & Clark CC last season and shot 34-percent from beyond the arc. 

“EJ’s confidence, size and overall game has improved tremendously over the past 12 months,” said Dooley. “He will provide us with much needed size and athleticism on the wing. He has the ability to score in a variety of ways, both inside and out and he can defend multiple positions.”

Christopher Lockhart (6-1, Jr., Guard, Prairie State College, Chicago, Heights, Ill.)

Lockhart is a stellar shooting guard that averaged 19 points, four rebounds and two assists per game last season at Prairie State College and shot 83-percent from the free-throw line.

He was a first-team All-Skyway Conference performer and earned a spot on the NJCAA Region V first-team. 

The 6-1 South Holland, Ill., product graduated from Leo High School as a National Honors Society member and led his basketball team to a Chicago Catholic League title his junior and senior seasons.

“Christopher is a tremendous shooter, but he can also put the ball on the floor and attack the basket,” said Dooley. “We’re extremely excited to add another quality shooter to the team and will also increase our athleticism at the guard spot.” 

The Wildcats open up the new season on Thursday, Nov. 1 at 7 p.m. against Kansas Wesleyan at home.

-BAKER-

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