GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. -- It's a new season for the Cornerstone men's basketball team which brings the challenge of replacing center Sam VanderSluis who was lost to graduation. For head coach Kim Elders, it will be a combination of junior Kyle Hayes and Wayland alum Cory Ainsworth who is only a freshman.
"I'm very excited actually because not many people get to come in as a freshman and play right away," Ainsworth said, "I hope I can exceed expectations and live up to what everyone hopes."
The six-foot-eight-inch Ainsworth knows it won't be easy to adjust to the college level and the physicality of the WHAC.
"I have to compete with a lot of bigger guys, so I'm hoping to hold my own and get those rebounds that makes up for [Sam VanderSluis] Slice, those are the shoes I'm looking to fill."
VanderSluis graduates as the program's all-time leader in career, season, and single game rebounding. While Coach Elders isn't expecting the world of his freshman right away, he knows he has the talent to help the Golden Eagles this season.
"He's guy that can play with his back to the basket and you can run your offense through him, that's what we were looking for," Elders continued, "he's got good moves. He can finish with both hands, good poise, good passer out of the post, those were the things we saw in him."
Cornerstone begins the season on Friday, October 25th at the WHAC/Crossroads Challenge in Marion, Indiana against Indiana Wesleyan.