Led by a trio of junior captains, the Mount View High School jayvee boys basketball squad hit the courts this season with speedy offense and a strong defense. In the end, the Thorndike-based team outscored opponents 858-736 and finished with a 10-6 record.

“I thought they did very well,” said Mustang coach Pat Cronin. “We started the season off a little slow but we came together as a team and I had great junior leadership.”

The Mustangs included juniors Aaron Elkins (guard), Ryan Derby (guard), Chris Akers (forward/center), Craig Nealley (forward), Andrew Gibbs (forward) and Cody Downer (guard/foward); sophomores James Philbrick (forward), Kyle Turner (guard), Billy Durand (forward), Will Nunn (forward) and Rick Moulton (forward); and freshmen Bryan Jungles (guard), Jack Simpson (guard), Gavin Caler (forward) and Kenneth McGray (forward).

Akers led the team with 156 points, including averaging 9.75 points. Elkins followed with 154 points and a 9.62 average, while Nealley finished at 152 and a 10.13 average; Turner,132 and a 9.42 average; and Downer, 96 and a 6.4 average.

The Mustangs averaged 53.62 points while holding opponents to 46 a game.

Coach Cronin said his squad played well with an aggressive, face-paced and uptempo game.

The Mustangs had four or five set plays, but their goal was to rebound and push the ball up the court. They wanted to get the ball up the floor as quickly as possible, the coach said.

“[We wanted to] try to get off a decent shot and if we didn’t have that decent shot to pull [the ball] back and go with our plays,” Cronin said. “We tried to push the ball and uptempo everything.”

Defensively, the Mustangs often used a 1-2-2 zone trap defense that improved throughout the season.

“That was something that the boys, not only myself, we all worked together on it,” Cronin said. “The junior boys, especially, they just helped implement the whole thing and the freshmen and sophomores followed suit and the more we did it the better they got.”

Cronin said Akers, Elkins and Nealley led the team. Point guard Elkins did an especially good job, he said.

“Everything ran through him and he did an outstanding job,” the coach said. “He played great defensively.”

However, Akers’ all-around performance may have been more impressive. With only one hand due to a birth defect and being relatively new to the high school sport, Akers still became the team’s leading scorer.

The Mustangs had plenty of strong games. Cronin said Mount View’s contest against Waterville was especially challenging. In the Mustangs 10th game, the ‘Stangs pulled out a 56-48 win, as Akers netted 14 points, Elkins 13 and Turner 12.

The coach also said the team’s game against Lincoln Academy of Newcastle was a turning point. After facing three losses and two wins in their previous five games, the Mustangs beat the Eagles 56-50. Turner led the way with 18 points, followed by Elkins with 10 and Nealley seven.

The Mustangs also had a solid 66-49 win against Maranacook of Readfield, when Turner netted 22 points, as well as a 59-43 victory over Nokomis of Newport, in which Elkins tallied 22 points.

Village NetMedia Sports Reporter Frederick Freudenberger can be reached at 207-594-4401 or by e-mail at fritz@villagesoup.com.