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Posted On: 06/25/18 8:00 AM
The Cross County Conference will see some changes come 2018-19. The defending champion Bethel Bees are among several teams losing some talented seniors to graduation. The good news is there are some good basketball players coming back, including Ethan Conley from Franklin-Monroe, Carter Gray from Arcanum, and Willie Bowman from Twin Valley South. Here are 5 predictions for the Cross County Conference.
1. Ethan Conley will be POY
It is hard to argue against the Jets high scoring guard for Player of the Year. Conley (PHO #30 2019) has had a huge summer and should bring his athleticism and talent to Franklin-Monroe come November. His offensive arsenal is incredible and his ability to be a difference maker will make him the most valuable player in the conference.
2. Bethel will not be repeating as CCC champs
After a 12-0 finish in the conference last year, the Bees will not be repeating as champs this season. They lose last season’s POY Ryan Rose, as well as ultra-talented point guard Caleb South among others. The top returning player is Kendal James (2019). Although James was a 2nd Team All-CCC player last season, he alone will not be enough to hold off the likes of Franklin-Monroe, Arcanum, or National Trail.
3. Ansonia will find themselves in the Top 4
The Tigers return Hunter Muir (2019) and Devyn Sink (2019) from a team that finished 7-5 in conference play. Muir finished last season as a 1st Team All-CCC basketball player. At 6’4”, he has the size to be a dominant inside presence while Sink is more of a backcourt player. The Tigers as a whole will be a more dominant team in 2018-19.
4. National Trail will have another successful season
The Blazers definitely surprised several people, especially finishing in a 6-way tie for 3rd place in the CCC. Finishing near the top of the conference is a definite possibility for the Trail as they return a great backcourt in Cameron Harrison (2021) and Travis Hunt (2019) for 2018-19. Last season, the Blazers beat some talented teams in Madison and Brookville, and there is no reason to believe they won’t knock off some more talented teams in November.
5. Conley will pick up a Division I offer
This summer, Conley has picked up several Division II offers from in-state schools including Ashland, Tiffin, and Findlay among others. During his sophomore year, Conley had received interest from Division I programs, including Belmont and Wright State. The way the Franklin Monroe senior has played over the last two seasons, we predict Conley can pick up an offer from a low major program Division I program this season.