Valley boys basketball squads boast potent offenses

The Farmington Indians Boys Basketball team should make some noise in the CCC West this year.

The Indians are a big team, and despite losing Vasil Borisevich, Justin Mango, and Richie Freckleton, return a solid group of players.  Among them are 6’7” All-CCC West senior forward Obi Momah, 6’5” senior forward Colin Cheesman, 6’2” junior guard Trey Witter, and 6’1” senior guard Ivan Guadalupe.

Under the direction of head coach Duane Witter, now in his fifteenth season with Farmington, the Indians finished with a record of 10-12 last season.

Farmington finished fifth in the CCC West and made the Class L state tournament with a No. 27 seed, but was able to knock off rivals No. 6 Avon in triple overtime in the first round before falling to No. 11 RHAM in the second round.  Despite a fifth place finish in the CCC West a year ago, Witter expects his team to contend for the conference title this season.

Avon

The Falcons had a disappointing finish to last year’s season.  Avon, NCCC Champions in 2012-2013 with a league record of 14-2 and an overall record of 19-5, was upset at home by rival Farmington 55-54 in a triple overtime game in the first round of the Class L state tournament.

Head coach Chris Vozzolo, now in his fifth season with the Falcons, has a team heavy on seniors and experience and is excited for the 2013-2014 campaign.

Among the returning seniors are guard Sean Herrmann (12 ppg), forward Patrick McKearney (13 ppg), forward Justin Reichler, guard Jacob Sartain, and guard Brad Fisher.  Avon will be without Ryan Marioni and Brandon Feinberg, both of whom graduated.  Vozzolo says his team needs to work on defense and rebounding to be competitive in the NCCC and in out-of-conference games.

Canton

The Warriors look like they have good things in store for their future.  Last year Canton squeaked into the CIAC Class S state tournament with an 8-14 record and lost to Old Lyme in the first round.

The Warriors were young a year ago, but had All-NCCC guard Patrick Sullivan to lead the way.  Sullivan has since graduated, but this year’s Warriors team has nine returning varsity players, only three of whom are seniors.  Those seniors are guard Alex Daley and swingmen  Jake Wood and Andrew Zukowski.

This Canton team will still be younger than many teams they play in the NCCC, but will not be lacking experience.

Head coach Craig Archambault expects his Canton team to return to the NCCC tournament and the state tournament in his second year leading the Warriors.

In addition to the seniors, junior forward Cam Daley and sophomore guards Cameron Lange and Rieley Hoffman will pace Canton in 2013-2014.

Simsbury

Expectations are high for the Simsbury Trojans this year.  This is as talented a team as Simsbury has had in recent memory, but they will have to work hard to replace four starters from last year’s 18-5 season.

In 2012-2013 the Trojans finished first in the CCC West with a 13-1 conference record.  Simsbury lost a heart breaker in the state tournament, losing in the first round to eighth seed Cheshire by a score of 59-58.  In his eighth year as head coach at Simsbury, Greg Stillman expects a lot out of this year’s team.

“If the team gels we could do some good things.  A more challenging schedule may make it tough to match last year’s outstanding record, but it will hopefully better prepare us for the postseason.”

Leading Simsbury in 2013-2014 will be Junior All-State guard EJ Crawford.  Crawford averaged 21 ppg and 4.5 rpg last season.

He will be joined by seniors Nate Medve and Steve Herron, juniors JB Hayes and John Patrina, and sophomore Rayon Christie.

 

 

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