The Westmont men’s basketball team, under the direction of new head coach Landon Boucher, plans to begin practicing in mid-September for the winter season. The Warriors return 10 players from last year’s team, which earned a No. 2 seed in the NAIA National Tournament before it was canceled due to COVID-19. “As excited as I am for this upcoming season, I truly believe our players are even more enthusiastic for it to begin,” Boucher says.
The Warriors added senior transfer Ajay Singh, a 6-foot-6 forward, who led NCAA Division II Notre Dame de Namur in scoring and rebounding last season. “He is obviously a very skilled player, and he fits in perfectly with the culture, character and demeanor of our team,” Boucher says. “This group of men demonstrated such unselfishness last season, we are looking forward to the journey of a new season ahead, and build on what was established from the year before.”
This season will certainly be different in terms of safety protocols such as face masks, hand sanitizer and social distancing. “We have close to 30 games scheduled, and as of now, we anticipate playing all of them,” Boucher says. “However, we have seen many other institutions and sports at different levels minimize travel and reduce the number of contests being played. We will try to make the very best with any given situation we are placed in.”
Boucher, who graduated from Westmont in 2012, takes over for John Moore, who retired from coaching after 27 years at the helm of the Warriors’ program. Boucher played for Westmont under Coach Moore during the 2010-11 and 2011-12 seasons, finishing his Warrior career as a 40.7 percent 3-point shooter. Boucher, who earned a master’s degree in coaching and athletics administration from Concordia University Irvine, coached at Providence and San Marcos High Schools in Santa Barbara before becoming an assistant coach at Westmont for the past two years. During the 2017-18 season, his final year at San Marcos, Boucher led the team to its most wins in a single season in school history (27), a Channel League title and the Royals’ first ever CIF-SS championship. He also won Channel League and CIF-SS Coach of the Year.
“Coach Boucher is a big-picture thinker who is not here just to win games but also to build on the tradition set before him,” says Westmont Athletic Director Dave Odell. “He brings a strong faith commitment and a real understanding of the college’s academic mission and our aspirations as an athletic program.”