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Posted On: 11/10/17 5:58 PM
The Teams (2016/17 record in parenthesis)
Columbus Community (2-20): The win column was difficult to find last season for the Wildcats, and with seven of its nine leading scorers gone from a season ago, that could be the story this season too. Tommy Pretz and Abel Mana will shoulder the load this season.
Highland (19-5): Zach Lasek is currently Iowa’s 2nd-ranked 2020, and he had a sensational freshman season for the Huskies. The rest of the starting five graduated though, and it will be junior guard Trey Lasek that will need to step up and help Zach fill up the stat sheet this season.
Iowa Mennonite (17-7): Nick Yutzy and Cole Yoder are gone, but there’s still plenty coming back for IMS this season. Cole Ours is a preseason 2nd-team selection, and he’ll lead the charge. Mitchell Schmeider will be right there to help lead the way.
Lone Tree (17-6): Niko Gosnell and Jovonte Squiers won’t be lacing them up for Lone Tree this season, and that could mean less success for the Lions. Those two were all time greats at Lone Tree, and preseason 2nd-team selection Brock Smith will try and follow in their footsteps.
Louisa-Muscatine (4-18): It was tough sledding last season for the Falcons, but there’s reason to be optimistic. Preseason 1st-team all-conference selection Brady Walker brings back 17.9 points per game, and six of last season’s top seven scorers are back.
Mediapolis (6-17): Will Schroeder will lead the way this season for the Bulldogs as they look to improve upon last season’s six-win total. Junior Nick Ensminger will be critical to the team’s success and is a budding star. The season starts Nov. 28th at Louisa-Muscatine.
Pekin (11-10): Expect the Panthers to improve upon its 11 wins from a season ago, and they just may contend for a conference title. Cameron Milikin is a preseason first-team all-conference selection, and Levi Long will help carry the load for the upstart Panthers.
Wapello (14-9): Watch out for the Indians this season, they’ll be very good. Preseason Player of the Year Trenton Massner is bringing back 22.9 points per game and some sharpshooting ability, and he’ll have plenty of help. Their season starts Nov. 28 at home against Winfeld-Mt. Union.
Winfield-Mt.Union (9-12): Bryce Robinson and BJ Rodgers will co-headline a Wolves squad that should see themselves catapult into the upper echelons of the conference this season. Expect them to be over .500 at the very least. The journey begins with a tough one against Wapello on Nov. 28.
Projected Order of Finish
Analysis: Trenton Massner and the Wapello Indians are the clear-cut favorites, but then it gets a bit muddled in the two through five spots. Of course, any of those top five teams could wind up with a conference title, and there will be many tough battles each night out in the SEISC North.
Preseason Player of the Year: Trenton Massner, Wapello (2018)
Certainly one of the more underrated plays in Iowa, Massner pieced together a remarkable junior season with the Indians, and there’s no reason to believe he won’t do the same this winter. Currently Iowa’s 85th-ranked 2018, Massner will likely be bumped up in the next installment of rankings.
Biggest Sleeper: Mitchell Schmieder, Iowa Mennonite (2018)
He’s a guy that led the team in rebounds last season, and scored 8.2 points per game to boot. But he was largely overshadowed by standout seniors Nick Yutzy and Cole Yoder. Look for Schmeider to get it going this year again, and produce in large doses for one of the conferences best teams.