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Basketball: Nisqually League boys and girls previews

Post by Doug Pacey / The News Tribune on Dec. 10, 2010 at 10:57 am with No Comments »
December 10, 2010 10:57 am

NISQUALLY LEAGUE BOYS BASKETBALL SEASON PREVIEW

CRYSTAL BALL
1. Cascade Christian (24-3)
2. Vashon (23-4)
3. Life Christian (18-13)
4. Seattle Christian (7-13)
5. Charles Wright (4-15)
6. Orting (10-12)
7. Chimacum (4-16)
*2009-10 records

STARTING FIVE
G Cody Shackett 5-11 Sr. Cascade Christian

Scoring machine is capable of carrying Cougars during stretches
W Alex Wegner 6-7 Sr. Vashon
Wegner will assume the role of go-to player for Pirates
G T.J. Tuttle 5-7 Sr. Guard
Dished 4.5 assists per game for Cougars in state championship season
G Christian Paige 6-1 Sr. Life Christian
One of Eagles’ five returning starters, averaged 13.1 points per game last year
G MacKinnon Simpson 6-3 Sr. Seattle Christian
Second-team all-league player averaged 18.0 points per game early in the season

FASTBREAK
The Nisqually League has produced the last three Class 1A state champions – Charles Wright in 2008, Vashon in 2009 and Cascade Christian in 2010. The defending champion Cougars graduated two all-league players, but return two starters, including Nisqually League co-MVP Cody Shackett, a senior guard. Returning guards T.J. Tuttle and Ty King fill out a talented and experienced backcourt, while Shawn Spencer, a 6-foot-8 sophomore center, gives Cascade Christian a legitimate inside presence. The Cougars have been tested early. Cascade Christian beat highly-regarded Franklin Pierce before falling to Fife. The team will face its biggest challenge when it hosts Lakes on Dec. 15. … Vashon will try to maintain success in the post-John Gage era. With the all-state center now at Stanford, W Alex Wegner, the team’s only returning starter, becomes the Pirates’ go-to player. Wegner, a 6-foot-7 senior with a shooting touch, averaged 15 points per game last season and was a first-team all-league selection. F Hamzah Griffin and PG Ben Whitaker will be contributors. … Life Christian Academy returns all five starters from a team that reached the Class 2B state tournament last season. The Eagles, now competing in Class 1A, are off to a hot start and should finish near the top of the standings. Guards Christian Paige and Bryant Diggs were all-league selections, but Life Christian will get production from many players, including Kameron Hutchens, who scored 22 points against Northwest Christian, Jordan King and Drew Curry. Transfers Kingston Kuehner and Karson Kuehner, who scored 20 points in a win over Auburn Adventist, add extra depth for Life Christian. … With four returning starters, Charles Wright Academy has plans to improve on last year’s four-win season. Senior wings Colin MacLeod and Pat Dale are the team’s top scorers – both averaged 8.5 points per game in 2009-10. The Tarriers lost their first three games before bouncing back and defeating Auburn Adventist. Dale and MacLeod combined for 30 points in the victory. … Seattle Christian, which reached the 1A state championship three years in a row from 2001-2003, could be on the upswing. The Warriors recorded a confidence-boosting and convincing 41-24 win over King’s earlier this season. MacKinnon Simpson has scored in double-figures in each of Seattle Christian’s first two games. … Three honorable mention all-league players – Dylan Brown-Bishop, Quinn Eldridge and Landon Cray – return for Chimacum.

NISQUALLY LEAGUE GIRLS BASKETBALL SEASON PREVIEW

CRYSTAL BALL
1. Seattle Christian 924-3)
2. Cascade Christian (15-10)
3. Vashon
4. Charles Wright (6-14)
5. Orting
6. Chimacum
7. Life Christian
*2009-10 records

STARTING FIVE
G Lexi Petersen 5-11 Sr. Seattle Christian

Two-time Nisqually League MVP is one of the top players in the state
P Katie Collier 6-2 Jr. Seattle Christian
Polished player dominates the paint as well as any post in the area
P Charlotte Kehoe 6-5 Jr. Vashon
Kehoe gives the Pirates an inside presence to rely on
W Kadyn Coltom 5-8 Jr. Cascade Christian
Capable of scoring 20-plus points in any given game
G Jackie Kirschner 5-6 Sr. Charles Wright
First-team all-leage pick averaged 9.3 points per game in 2009-10

FASTBREAK
Seattle Christian will mount another quest to claim the Class 1A state championship. The Warriors, who won the 2009 state title, were one of the favorites entering last year’s tournament, but were bounced in the first round after poor shooting cost them in a 33-27 loss. With four returning starters, including University of Oregon-bound guard Lexi Petersen, who averaged 20.4 points per game last season. Petersen, a two-time Nisqually League MVP, is complemented by post Katie Collier, a 6-foot-2 junior with Division-I-talent. Collier provides an imposing inside presence, averaging 13.5 points, 10.7 rebounds and 5 blocks per game. Seattle Christian also welcomes back seniors Carissa Doyle, Kelly Jansen and Maddie Harris. The Warriors aren’t ducking competition and have scheduled non-league games against Issaquah, River Ridge, Kentlake and Tahoma. … Cascade Christian fell short of qualifying for the state tournament, losing two winner-to-state games last season. With all five starters back, the Cougars could make the leap to becoming a state-tournament team in 2011. Wings Kadyn Coltom, a first-team all-league selection, and Kaycee Creech, a second-team all-league selection, provide most of the scoring. Guard Bree Guererro and post Chloe Reed also contribute and freshman Katie Rozumny will add to the Cougars’ depth. … A pair of senior guards – Jackie Kirschner and Rachel Williams – will lead Charles Wright Academy. Kirschner and Williams each averaged more than nine points per game last season. Post Sydney Hughes, a 6-foot-5 junior, 5-10 forward Rebacca Byrne and Vanessa Davis, a 6-foot freshman, give the Tarriers size inside. Jesse Hirota and Alex Portnow will play guard. … Charlotte Kehoe will help Vashon try to extend its consecutive state tournament appearances streak to four this season. The tall post scored 13 points in the Pirates’ season-opening 39-38 win against Port Townsend and is capable of pulling down double-digit rebounds every game.

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