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Posted On: 10/30/18 12:31 PM
Looking ahead to the 2018-19 season, Prep Hoops Wisconsin breaks down the race in the Mississippi Valley Conference…
1. La Crosse Central
3. La Crosse Logan
La Crosse Central has reached the state tournament in each of the last three seasons. The Red Raiders are a strong favorite to return in 2018-19. Central, who fielded a very young squad last season, reloads and gets just about everybody back. Going into the season, they are head and shoulders above the rest of the conference.
Onalaska could win a lot of different conferences. Unfortunately, some of their better teams have came about in the midst of this dynasty run La Crosse Central has been in the midst of. The Hilltoppers lose their leading scorer Noah Skifton, but have a strong front court and arguably the best underclassmen prospect in the conference in Sam Kick.
Logan loses last season’s Co-Player of the Year C.J. Siegel, but has some interesting pieces. The Rangers have a few matchup problems at the forward position in Maguire Werner and Jacksun Hamilton are both athletic, versatile prospects with strong upsides. An all-conference pick from a year ago, Calvin Mavin is also back to help soften the blow of Siegel.
PROJECTED FIRST TEAM ALL-CONFERENCE
G Johnny Davis – La Crosse Central
G Noah Parcher – La Crosse Central
G Jimmy Gillespie – Holmen
F Jordan Davis – La Crosse Central
F Terrance Thompson – La Crosse Central
G Sam Kick – Onalaska
G Calvin Mavin – La Crosse Logan
F Maguire Werner – La Crosse Logan
F Tyrell Stuttley – Onalaska
F Carson Arenz – Onalaska
PLAYER OF THE YEAR
You could have made a very strong case for Johnny Davis last season. Not only did Central win the conference, but Davis was the leading scorer in the Mississippi Valley at 22.8 ppg.
Jimmy Gillespie showed some real promise over the summer. The Holmen standout averaged 12.6 ppg as a junior. With Craig Newsome graduated, Gillespie is going to get more shots. The 6-foot-1 guard can score from all over the floor and is deadly from 3-point range, connecting on 71 triples last season.
La Crosse Central has perhaps the strongest quartet in the state with the Davis twins, Parcher, and Thompson. Those four will take the headlines, but senior David Hayden should be a real X-factor for the Red Raiders this season. We saw over the summer that Hayden made some vast improvements in his game. A strong 3-point shooter, the 5-foot-10 guard is also quite athletic and very strong around the rim. Hayden averaged 8.0 ppg last season. With all the talent Central has, that probably won’t go up much, but don’t be surprised if Hayden gives this team a huge lift and certain points during the season.