2005-06 boys basketball preview

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, November 8, 2005

Briarwood Lions

Head Coach: Chris Laatsch

Last Season: 23-8 overall, 5-1 area

Probable Starters: PG: Drew Faulk, JR (5-8); SG: Wesley Lynch, JR (5-11); SF: Austin Thamos, JR (6-4); PF: Matt Robertson, SR (6-5); C: Nate Carlson, JR (6-3)

Players to watch: Matt Robertson is the sole returning starter for the Lions.

Season Outlook: The Lions are inexperienced after losing four-of-five starters from last season. Laatsch said the team’s success will depend on how quickly they can learn to play with each other.

Calera Eagles

Head Coach: Robert Burdette

Last Season: 31-5 overall, 8-0 area

Probable Starters: PG: T.J. Green, SR (5-11, 180); SG: Kyle Nichols, JR (6-1, 160); SF: Raymond Oldham, SR (5-10, 155); PF: Kaderious Lacey, SO (6-1, 160); C: Brian Watts, JR (6-1, 160)

Players to watch: T.J. Green and Kaderious Lacey will play key roles for the Eagles this season.

Season Outlook: The Eagles only have one starter returning from last year’s state champion team, but Burdette said a number of players will be able to step up and fill the void left by the graduation of four seniors.

Chelsea Hornets

Head Coach: Wade Waldrop

Last Season: 11-14 overall, 2-4 area

Probable Starters: PG: Stephen Icolano; SG: Matt Wooten; SF: Alex Lovorn; PF: David Strider; C: Don Hill

Players to watch: Matt Wooten, JR; David Strider, SO; and Davin Palmer, SO will all play key roles for the Hornets this season.

Season Outlook: The Hornets had to replace six seniors this year from last year’s squad.

The team is rebuilding as they have no returning starters and only three players that have any varsity experience.

Coosa Valley Rebels

Head Coach: Chad Baker

Last Season: 8-13 overall, 2-6 area

Probable Starters: PG: Jacob Beach, SR; SG: Curtis Martin, SR; SF: Pat Sylestine, JR; PF: Alex Maske, SR; C: Corey Dunseth, SR

Players to watch: Corey Dunseth, Alex Maske and Curtis Martin will all play key roles for the Rebels this season.

Season Outlook: Coach Baker said his squad is looking forward to a great season. Despite only returning two starters from last year’s team, Baker said he has been able to put together a strong starting five this season.

Cornerstone Chargers

Head Coach: Tim Smith

Last Season: 20-3 overall, 8-2 area

Probable Starters: PG: Ty Youngblood, SR (6-0); SG: Dustin Shears, SR (6-0); SF: Blake Ettress, JR (6-2); PF: Daniel Bulger, JR (6-0); C: Jon Ray, SR (6-5)

Players to watch: Ty Youngblood and Dustin Shears will be important contributors to the Chargers’ success this season.

Season Outlook: Cornerstone lost three key starters from last year’s team but coach Smith said the squad has a good starting point guard in Youngblood and will hopefully have a great chance at making the playoffs this year.

Indian Springs

Head Coach: Greg Van Horn

Last Season: 10-10 overall, 1-3 area

Probable Starters: PG: Ben Guion, SO (5-9, 120); SG: John Bains, SR (6-0, 170); SF: Cyrus Ntakirutinka, SR (5-10, 150); PF: Justin Ballard, SO (6-2, 175); Brett Janich, SR (5-11, 180)

Players to watch: Josh Bains (16 ppg. in 2004) and Brett Janich (Avg. 4 pts, 3 reb in 2004)

Season Outlook: The team has only one starter returning from last year, but three other players have varsity experience. Van Horn said his squad will have to start slow but should improve as the season goes along.

Kingwood Lions

Head Coach: Chris Simpson

Last Season: 5-14 overall, 1-9 area

Probable Starters: PG: Andrew Pearce, JR (6-0, 160); SG: Jonathan Haley, SR (6-0, 165); SF: Cody Owens, JR (6-3, 175); PF: Nick Holcombe, JR (6-2, 205); C: Adam Irby, SR (6-6, 185)

Players to watch: The Lions’ starting five will play key roles in the team’s season.

Season Outlook: Coach Simpson said his team has improved much from last season. The Lions return four starters this year and welcome a lot of speed and depth with the likes of Juhani Ikonen, Dustin Myrick and Grant Armstrong.

Montevallo Bulldogs

Head Coach: Bobby Pierson

Last Season: 5-20 overall, 0-6 area

Probable Starters: unavailable

Players to watch: Brian Fulgham, Douglas Farrington, Darion Chappell and Willy Sulleens

Season Outlook: The year is going to be a tough one for a growing Montevallo team, coach Pierson said. The Bulldogs return several seniors from last year’s squad but Pierson said he is still looking for a good point guard.

Oak Mountain Eagles

Head Coach: Jerry North

Last Season: 25-6 overall, 9-3 area

Probable Starters: PG: Tyler Gallimore, SR (5-9, 155); SG: Loy Vaughn, SR (5-9, 155); SF: Thomas Nordyke, SR (6-3, 160); PF: Bryant Gardner, SR (6-1, 165); C: Justin LuQuire, SR (6-6, 205)

Players to watch: Tyler Gallimore is a returning as a four-year letterman and a two-year starter for the Eagles.

Season Outlook: The Eagles only lost two players from last year but both were leading scorers and rebounders. Coach North said his team will be small but a little quicker than they have been in past seasons.

Pelham Panthers

Head Coach: Owen Butts

Last Season: 9-21 overall, 0-12 area

Probable Starters: PG: Steven Clark, JR; SG: Robert Hatcher, SO; SF: Brad Teasley, SR; PF: Trevis Paschel, SR; C: Jared Stanbridge, JR

Players to watch: Steven Clark and Robert Hatcher will both play key roles for the Panthers this season.

Season Outlook: The Panthers are an inexperienced but talented team, coach Butts said.

The players are all good shooters and have a lot of offensive threats.

Shelby Academy Raiders

Head Coach: Dewayne Kervin

Last Season: unavailable

Probable Starters: unavailable

Players to watch: unavailable

Season Outlook: The Raiders return Josh Kervin, SR (5-7, 150) and Colby Green, SR (5-7, 150) to this year’s team.

Shelby County Wildcats

Head Coach: Charles Dickinson

Last Season: 27-4 overall, 6-0 area

Probable Starters: Coach Dickinson said nine players are vying for starting positions and nothing has been determined yet.

Players to watch: unavailable

Season Outlook: Dickinson said that with eight seniors he hopes to have success, but that success depends on how the team practices and how consistently they play.

Most of all, Dickinson said, the team must play as a cohesive unit to be successful.

Spain Park Jaguars

Head Coach: Brian Moon

Last Season: unavailable

Probable Starters: unavailable

Players to watch: unavailable

Season Outlook: The Jaguars return Adam Mims, SR (5-8, 170); Jonathan Hall, SR (6-2, 175) and Rob Drum, SR (6-7, 255) to this year’s team.

Thompson Warriors

Head Coach: Jeff Nichols

Last Season: 14-19 overall, 6-6 area

Probable Starters: PG: Siddeeq Cooper, FR; SG: Dameion Bland, SO; SF: Gary Cunningham, JR; PF: Laderreous Kelley, JR; C: Jaquezz Brown, JR.

Players to watch: Gary Cunningham returns as the Warriors’ top scorer, and Laderreous Kelley will help set the pace for the team.

Season Outlook: The Warriors have made the playoffs three years in a row and are looking for their fourth trip, coach Nichols said.

The team has set a goal to reach at least the Sweet 16 in this year’s postseason.

Vincent Yellow Jackets

Head Coach: Preston Wilson

Last Season: 9-19 overall, 3-5 area

Probable Starters: PG: Leo Chancellor, SR (5-9, 209); SG: Justin Peterson, JR (5-9, 170); SF: Cameron Posey, SO (6-4, 185); PF: Charles Grimett, SR (6-9, 201); C: Octavius Looney, JR (6-2, 189)

Players to watch: Leo Chancellor will play a key role for the Jackets at the point guard position.

Season Outlook: unavailabl