NEPSAC Class C Preview
St. Mark’s is looking for the three-peat in Class C, Lawrence Academy out to prove they are the only real competition, Holderness hoping to offset the loss of a potential point guard, and Middlesex relying on their star to get them into the championship mix. Those are just some of the storylines that highlight the upcoming NEPSAC Class C season.
St. Mark’s School – Massachusetts
The two time defending champions enter the 09-10 campaign as the favorites in Class C despite a couple of noteworthy challengers. Reigning Massachusetts Gatorade Player of the Year Nate Lubick returns for his senior season and he anchors an absolutely loaded frontline featuring fellow senior Melsahn Basabe and sophomore sensation Kaleb Tarczewski. Fellow sophomore Alex Murphy headlines the backcourt where he will be joined by Georgetown transfer Jaymie Spears and Eli Lubick. Eric Green is a versatile 6’5” sophomore who could make contributions at a number of different spots.
Lawrence Academy – Massachusetts
Last week we made the statement that Class C crown was no longer a two horse race and that fresh off their upset of LA in last year’s NEPSAC tournament, Holderness was ready to contend on a regular basis. Two days later Lawrence traveled to Holderness for their opening game of the season and made a statement with a 74-53 win. LA’s backcourt is deadly with Shabazz Napier and Denzel Brito. Junior swingman Marcus Grant is one of the most underrated players in the region and Dan Giovanchini and Sarkie Ampin a more than capable interior duo. Also, look out for newly arrived Clay Horne a 6’8” junior who makes his debut performance Thursday night.
Holderness School – New Hampshire
With Zach Hurynowicz leaving Holderness prior to the beginning of the season, last year’s Class C finalists have lost a player projected to be of the utmost importance. Nevertheless, Imoh Silas, Alex Francis, and Scott King give them one a frontcourt trio that is capable of competing with anyone. But if Holderness hopes to return to the championship game the backcourt of Gabbas Maldunas and Emmanuel Smith will need to prove up to the task.
Middlesex School – Massachusetts
Rod Odom has little left to prove having already earned a top 100 national ranking and picking up scholarship offers from some of the most prominent colleges in the country before signing with Vanderbilt. But in order to solidify his legacy, the New York native will need to put this Middlesex team on his back and lead them to the promise land. If his first game was any indication he appears up to the task as he dominated Governor’s with 30 points, 13 rebounds, and 6 blocked shots. First year guard Kevin Lubin also projects as a major contributor with his ability to shoot the ball, get to the rim, and see the floor.
Milton Academy – Massachusetts
Dennis Clifford was one of the breakout prospects of the summer and now that he is under head coach Lamar Reddick’s tutelage at Milton Academy his development promises to continue at a rapid rate. While Clifford will anchor the team on the interior, there are some other pieces on hand as well. Andrew Dowton is a tough as nails forward who will provide senior leadership and plenty of production. Sophomore guards Travis Sheldon and Eric Davis have bright futures ahead of them as does freshman forward Nick Bland.
Rivers School – Massachusetts
The senior trio of Ben Patrick (honorable mention ISL last year), Connor Mancuso, and John Bulliet (out until January with separated shoulder) provide this team with senior leadership but the future is especially bright at Rivers with young players like Taariq Allen, Kyle Reardon, Shaquor Sandiford, and Carlin Haymon on board. Allen is a great athlete and good shooter, Reardon a tremendously skilled and versatile face-up forward, Sandiford a strong scoring guard who defends and rebounds, and Haymon an exciting young point guard who threw down his first dunk in practice last week.
Kingswood-Oxford School – Connecticut
K-O has had a busy opening week to the season, already racing out to a perfect 4-0 start with wins over Nobles, Brunswick, St. Sebastian, and Westminster. Tylon Smith headlines a balanced line-up and should be due for a big junior season in West Hartford.
St. Sebastian’s – Massachusetts
With Greg Jacques and Cory Willis departing via graduation, St. Sebastian’s question mark lies in the backcourt. But there are few questions up front where high flying Deric McCottrell and super skilled Ryan Kilcullen form an imposing tandem.
• Dan Guest n’company make Master’s School (CT) a team to be reckoned with this season.
• Buckingham, Browne, & Nichols (MA) has a potential star in the making in Kyle Umemba and he may be in store for a breakout season.
• Wes Clark was the top assist man in the ISL last year but he will have to shoulder more of the scoring load to keep Governor’s (MA) competitive this year.
• Belmont Hill (MA) will be competitive and junior swingman Zach Williams could be in store for a big season.
• Tarik Smith put up big numbers as a freshman and he is expected to do more of the same for St. Paul’s (NH) as a sophomore.
• Hopkins is a tough and disciplined squad with a young shooter who can fill up the scoring column in Lucas Hausman.