2014 Coastal League Boys/Girls Basketball Predictions
- Francis Parker – It’s no doubt that the Lancers are the cream of the crop of this years’ class with 6-foot-10 senior EVAN FITZNER and 6-foot-7 transfer TIM HARRISON. The only real question is will they lose a league game?
- Santa Fe Christian – The Eagles have the most leadership in senior captain BRIAN FINLEY (19.5 ppg) and junior JACK LANGBORG (15.8 ppg). However, they don’t have the size in the paint to take the title away from Parker.
- Bishops – Head coach MATT NIEHUES wanted to incorporate anew system when he got the Knights’ job four years ago and it’s starting to finally look like he’s doing a great job making it happen with blue-chip freshman JUSTIN WOODLEY (14 ppg) and senior captain MATT LIZANICH (16 ppg). They might have the most complete starting five in the league, but like the previous team they don’t have the size to contend for the title with their tallest player standing just six feet tall. Don’t get it twisted though, they are probably the most feisty in the league.
- La Jolla Country Day – Freshman phenom JOSIAH ESSELSTROM (16.8 ppg) has such a big impact on the floor that head coach RYAN MEIER admitted to adjusted their entire offense around him. CHRISTIAN HAYES (16.1 ppg) and BRUCE EDWARDS (12.9 ppg) are also excellent scorers, but they are a year or two away from contending for the title.
- Army-Navy Academy – After point guard DEVIN WATSON led the Warriors to a CIF Championship last year he quietly transferred to El Camino for his senior season. With six other graduates off of last year’s team that leaves head coach TOM TARATINO with a squad that amazingly doesn’t have a single senior on it. That bodes well for the future with the likes of junior captain CALEB MORRIS and six-foot-7 freshman sensation RICHARD POLANCO, but their depth and experience is a huge concern right now. They’ve played a schedule so far that has been out of their league with this roster instead of last seasons, so a jump in the rankings by the end of the season wouldn’t be a shock to anyone.
- Horizon – This may come as a shocker after the Panthers’ won the Division V state Championship last year when ETHAN UNDERWOOD hit the famous “Shot Heard Throughout California” at the buzzer with a 3-pointer to miraculously win it. The good news…he’s back. The bad news…is they have lost 78 percent of their scoring from last year’s squad in his older brother CODY UNDERWOOD, DARREN CARRINGTON JR. and MARKEL BYRD. Ethan (17.8 ppg) is now the star and no one else comes close to averaging double digits. Can others step up if he gets double-teamed?!
- Bishops – Not only are the Lady Knights #1 in the predictions…they might be the best team in all of California. They are loaded with St. John’s bound 6-foot-3 senior IMANI LITTLETON scoring in the paint (21.1 ppg) and dominating the boards (13 rpg), but they also have the best freshman in the county in DESTINY LITTLETON (20 ppg, 8.2 rpg) – no relation – that can shoot the lights out of the gym and can even knock ’em down from NBA range. Add to that mix is the leadership from senior STACEY DUCEY that keeps the glue together for head coach MARLON WELLS.
- La Jolla Country Day – This is definitely a down year for the Torreys, yet they are so good that they still claim a #3 rank in the polls which speak volumes to the product head coach TERRI BAMFORD can consistently put on the court. In a non-league bout earlier this season they lost to Bishops by 36 points, however they just beat Santa Fe Christian by 48 points, which shows you the levels that theses two teams are on. The first league game between the Knights should end the discussion of league champs one way or another.
- Santa Fe Christian – Head coach LAURIE BYRD has gotten the Eagles off to a great start, but the question remains about their early season schedule and 11-3 record after getting stomped by LJCD. JESSI MOORE, LINDSEY ALMQUIST and MEGAN FRANKE are the three team captains, but without a single player standing six feet tall, they are extremely undersized to make a true run at knocking off the teams literally above them.
- Horizon – JANAE OMUSI (27.8 ppg, 8.2 rpg) is a player of the year candidate and SARAH PORTER (15.3 ppg) plays a nice Robin, but beyond that the Panthers have an extremely thin roster. If either of the two gets injured or into foul trouble it’s lights out for head coach VICKIE HARRINGTON‘s squad.
Tagged army-navy, bishops, brian finley, bruce edwards, caleb morris, christian hayes, cody underwood, darren carrington jr, destiny littleton, devin watson, eagles, ethan underwood, evan fitzner, francis parker, horizon panthers, imani littleton, jack langborg, janae omusi, jessi moore, josiah esselstrom, justin woodley, knights, la jolla country day, lancers, laurie byrd, lindsay almquist, markel byrd, marlon byrd, matt lizanich, matt niehues, megan franke, richard polanco, ryan meier, santa fe christian, sarah porter, stacey ducey, terri bamford, tim harrison, tom taratino, torreys, vickie carrington