Fullerton working with girls team after 12-0 record with junior high boys


BALDWIN — Rusty Fullerton Jr. is coming off a memorable junior high boys basketball season of coaching at Baldwin.

But he’s ready for another challenge.

Fullerton confirmed he is helping with the girls basketball varsity team now that Lee Vickers has resigned prior to the holiday. Athletic director Shawn Williams said on Tuesday there will not be an announcement of a new coach until after school board approval.

During the break there were open gyms, but Fullerton indicated there wasn’t too much else besides that for the girls team. The Panthers, 0-4, are scheduled to be a home against Crossroads on Friday.

“We’re still putting in the systems together,” Fullerton said, indicating with the size of the team, there’s been an emphasis on the fundamentals using the players’ speed. “We’ll kind of live and die by it.”

Baldwin coaches are fully aware, Fullerton noted, that opponents will apply heavy defensive pressure and said more work by the Panthers is needed with the pressbreaker.

Fullerton recently completed coaching the Baldwin junior high boys team which went 12-0 and won the West Michigan D tournament title.

He indicated most of the wins were by “pretty good margins.” Baldwin edged Pentwater in the championship game.

“Defense won us most of our games and hustle plays,” Fullerton said.

Levonte Palmer led Baldwin in scoring. Baldwin had 20 players and only had one opportunity to split it into two teams and two games against an opponent, Pentwater.

“They all worked hard during practice to get playing time,” he said. “The future looks right for our basketball program.”

Fullerton lives in the Baldwin area and was on the football staff last fall.