Posted On: 10/3/18 3:32 PM
With the high school season just around the corner it’s time for us to take a look as some of the conferences across the state. First up is the conference that brought home the state title last year and is the most difficult to predict as it is a gauntlet each night, the Centennial league complete with a prediction of how things shake out.
Grandview competed and showed up all season long and really turned it on when league play started and looked like a team capable of winning a game or two at the state tournament, but what they did was special. They won state and it was in their own way. They played slow and methodical with hard-nosed defense and executed. This is a team that will be led by Davon Walker, a very good point guard that had a good summer as he showed he can score at will, control the pace and change the game in the half-court set. They also have a spark plug in Levi Dombro and Tyler Unger who are both returning and also can change the outcome of games. Levi does it with not many mistakes and does all of the little things. Unger scores in bunches and will be even more of a threat I’m sure this year. Dayne Prim was one of the best players in the state tourney and also dominated this summer, he will be ready to be one of the standout players for not only the conference but state and has the championship pedigree that a team needs. He scores, defends and is a player that demands double teams each game out and still gets it done. Him alongside Caleb McGill, who might have had the best summer of any player in the conference make up one of the best frontcourts in the entire state and will have to be knocked off as champions. A repeat is not out of the question.
Smoky Hill has the best backcourt in the state. When you have the top two guys in their respective classes in Quentin Rock and Kenny Foster then you’re doing something right and now they will be a year older and better. These guys put in the work all summer and had a good offseason and are poised to make a state run. Rock will be the guard and lead the team and Foster will most likely lead the state in scoring or be up there. Foster just signed to Wyoming so this will be about finishing off strong in preparation of continuing his career at the next level. Rock has gained interest and will continue to get attention as long as he has his guys ready to compete. He should have a breakout season and pick off where he left off last year as one of the top guards in the state. Others will have to emerge if the Buffaloes really want to make some noise, but the team goes as far as their two best players allow. If they win Centennial this year it won’t be too much of a surprise.
Should Compete:Overland, Cherry Creek, Mullen
Overland surely will miss their top two scorers from last season’s team and will be tested nightly as far as scoring goes, but they will be a lot more balanced this year. They will be led defensively this year by Hezekiah Swanson and Kaleb Chaney in the back court who will cause nightmares for other guards, they have good all-around players in Stephen Hayes and Jalone Rice returning but they will be better because of their bigs. Graham Ike and Alexander Pena-Avila will be the deciding factors on how good this young team goes.
Cherry Creek will be led by Sebastian Cole and this will be his coming out year. I expect him to be one of the most improved players in the state and lead his team nightly. This Cherry Creek bunch is tough and doesn’t give up.
Mullen is primed for a bounce back season after playing a lot of youngsters last summer. Chrisian Davis and Connor Riepma were solid starters last year and will attempt to go out with a bang this year for senior season, Expect for them to push nightly and surprise team, this group is better than what many believe and it will show.
This has to be a year that Arapahoe has to be improving for sure but are still in the stage of making things happen. With a majority of last year’s team being seniors and them leaving its good to close the door on a chapter with them having an underwhelming season. The team only managed to win four games total last year and only one of them came in league play so it’s time to turn things around. Lane D ‘Agostino on for a way bigger role his senior year and is coming off of a summer in which he dominated. He will try and carry that play over as he will be asked to do a lot and will once again carry the scoring load for the team. He is a knock down shooter that can light it up and he will be tasked with more things as well. He should be up for the challenge. Bobby Baltzer will be the lead guard and will be looking to make a name for himself this upcoming year and should show improvement on a team that will do better as well as Kevin Lukasiewicz who shall be a big guy in the middle. Look for Arapahoe to have a better year.
18-19 Conference Predictions
- 1) Grandview
- 2) Smoky Hill
- 3) Overland
- 4) Cherry Creek
- 5) Mullen
- 6) Eaglecrest
- 7) Cherokee Trail
- 8) Arapahoe