Season preview: Cougars boys basketball looks for tenth league title
Country Christians boys basketball team has the potential to take first in the Casco League for the tenth time in a row. The Cougars lost two key players in Levi Lewandowski and Mitchel Cunningham, but they still return plenty of talent.
[Cunningham and Lewandowski] got a lot of play time in last year, Coach Doug Nofziger said. Theyre two key pieces that well be missing.
Nofziger said hell also miss Zachary Farners strength and height. He could rebound really well, Nofziger said.
As for the team composition overall, its kind of a weird year, Nofziger said. The Cougars have a few seniors who havent played in a couple years joining the team. They have only one returning senior, Cooper Nofziger, who started last year.
Hes just one of those guys that did a lot of the dirty work, Coach Nofziger said.
Last year, the team struggled to find a clear, vocal leader, Coach Nofziger said. This year, he expects Cooper to step into a much-needed leadership role.
In addition to Cooper, the Cougars have lots of juniors with plenty of court time under their belts to help keep the team at the top of the league.
Luke Carter is now 6-foot five-inches tall, Nofziger said. Hes gotten better every year.
Then theres Ben Grandle, who will mostly play wing. Hes kind of my shooter, Nofziger said. Hes grown over the years.
Grandle does tower over a few of the other Cougars. Outside of his height, hes also got a couple years of play behind him. The last couple years have been beneficial, Grandle said. I learned a lot of from the juniors and seniors ahead of me.
Also playing wing, Jordan Syphard will most likely step up this year and be a big part of the picture, Nofziger said. He has all kinds of athletic ability.
Then theres Avery Nofziger as well. He missed half of last season due to a knee injury, but Coach Nofziger said he made a full comeback and may be starting as point guard.
Mitchel Sandberg is also returning. Hes on of the grittiest players on the team, Coach Nofziger said. Hes got a motor that wont quit. Hes made huge strides.
With Cooper Nofziger stepping in as a leader on the court, and the talent of the junior class, the Cougars are looking at another good season, one that will probably press into state playoffs.
The main focus for Coach Nofziger right now, is to get in as many practices before they begin playing tough preseason games that will help sharpen them up for league play.