Boys' Basketball Previews: Ndiaye leads strong Brethren Christian team

Six local boys' prep basketball teams are in final preparations for the start of the 2012-13 season which begins next week for several teams. Below is a capsule look at the teams.


Brethren Christian Warriors

League: Academy

Head coach: Jon Bahnsen (14th year, 249-136)

Coaching staff: Dan Healy, Gary Sully, Jamal Sampson, A.J. McGregor.

2011-12 record: 24-6

2012 league finish: 10-0 (champion)

2012 CIF results: Reached quarterfinal round Division 5AA playoffs

Returning starters: Mamadou Ndiaye (C, 7-5, league MVP, first-team All-CIF, second-team All-State, Sr.); Dakota Warren (F, 6-4, second-team all-league, Sr.); Caleb Keller (G, 6-2, second-team all-league), Jr.); Brandon Bryson (G, 5-8, league honorable mention, Soph.).

The roster: Patrick Poss (F, 6-2, Jr.); Guy Demazeliere (F., 6-3, Soph.); Cameron Griffin (F, 6-3, Fr.); Andrew Hall (G, 5-11, Soph.); Nate Dang (G, 5-9,Soph.); Nick Dang (G, 5-10, Jr.); Hayden Rahman (F, 6-1, Jr.).

Team notes: BC is loaded. Four all-league players return from a team that won 25 games a year ago, captured another Academy League title in the process, and advanced to the 5-AA Division quarterfinals where the Warriors were eliminated by eventual state champion Village Christian. Seven-foot-five center Mamadou Ndiaye signed last week with UC Irvine. Ndiaye, in his second year, already owns the program record for shots blocked in a single season and this year could become the program's career leader in scoring, rebounds and blocked shots.

Coach's outlook: "We should be a very good team with all the necessary components including size, quickness, experience, depth, and scoring, to win league for the fifth straight year and make another deep run in the CIF playoffs," Bahnsen said.

Season opener: Dec. 6, vs. Valley Christian (Ariz.), Gilbert Christian Tournament (Gilbert, Ariz.).


Edison Chargers

League: Sunset

Head coach: Rich Boyce ((13th year, 217-115)

Coaching staff: Chris Gray, Jeff Harrell

2011-12 record: 20-8

2012 league finish: (6-4, second place tie)

2012 CIF results: Reached second round Division 1-AA playoffs.

Returning starters: Harrison Brunelli (C, 6-3, Sr.); Derek Molina (G, 6-0, Soph.).

The roster: Trenton Aschoff (C, 6-3, Sr.); Jimmy Baker-Arend (F, 6-3, Sr.); Shion Baldwin (F, 6-2, Sr.); Brodie Barton (G, 5-11, Sr.); Austin Gannon (G, 5-11, Jr.); AJ Garrity (F, 6-1, Soph.); Jake Haar (G, 5-11, Soph.); Josh Haar (G, 5-11, Sr.); Brae Ivey (G, 5-11, Soph.); Kevin Johnson (F, 6-1, Sr.); Taylor Nelson (C, 6-5, Sr.); Nick Rubio (G, 6-0, Jr.); Thomas Wadsworth (F, 6-2, Sr.).

Team notes: The Chargers, who won the Sunset League title two years ago, have two starters back from a team that last year reached the second round of the postseason and featured all-league and All-CIF player Dreon Barlett (Sacramento State) and all-league player Corey Foster. Last year's group also won two nonleague tournaments which gave the program eight tournament titles in nine tourney appearances over the past three years. "We were really an overachieving team last year," Boyce said.

Coach's outlook: "We are very young and inexperienced," Boyce said. "We will have to bring it every night to compete."

Season opener: Dec. 4, vs. Tustin, at Corona del Mar Tournament.


Fountain Valley Barons

League: Sunset

Head coach: Roger Holmes (3rd year, 33-20)

Coaching staff: Billy Thompson, Garrett James

2011-12 record: 17-9

2012 league finish: 6-4 (second place tie)

2012 CIF results: Reached first round Division 1AA playoffs

Returning starters: Josh Armstrong (G, 6-3, first-team all-league, Sr.); Tanner Trounce (F, 6-2, Sr.).

The roster: Joey Petersen (F, 6-4, Sr.); Danny Chamaa (G, 5-8, Sr.); Jackson Gatlin (C, 6-7, Sr.); Jacob Meyer (F, 6-1, Jr.); Kevin Mansouri (G, 6-0, Sr.); Mark Girgis (G, 5-8, Sr.); Priyesh Patel (C, 6-4, Sr.); Rich Le (G, 5-8, Jr.); Chris Meyer (F, 6-2, Fr.).

Team notes: Roger Holmes begins his 21st year overall as a head coach and has two starters back from a team that last year earned a repeat trip to the CIF Southern Section playoffs. The Barons welcome back six returning players but must replace graduated all-league and three year varsity players Nate Moss and Sean Myers, as well as two-year player Zach Richartz.

Coach's outlook: "Last season, we continued to make progress in the rebuilding of the Fountain Valley basketball program," Holmes said. "We had some big wins and played competitively in finishing second in league and making the playoffs for the second consecutive year. This year's team is skilled and athletic. We have six returners and that gives us some good experience. Our team has to take on the challenge of continuing the improvement of our program that our two previous teams have done successfully."

Season opener: 2 p.m. Saturday , vs. La Habra, Coaches for a Cause event (Ocean View High).


Huntington Beach Oilers

League: Sunset

Head coach: Fabian Luna (7th year, 104-64)

Coaching staff: Richard Alvarez, Robert Deck, Roy Miller

2011-12 record: 16-13

2012 league finish: 6-4 (second place tie)

2012 CIF results: Reached second round Division 1-A playoffs.

Returning starters: Andrew TenBrink (G, 6-4, all-league, honorable mention All-CIF, Sr.); Harley Ruder (F, 6-5, all-league, second-team All-CIF, Sr.).

The roster: Malik Charles (G, 5-9, Soph.); Ryan Chocek (F, 6-7, Jr.); Joe Kiblen (C, 6-7, Jr.); Derek Krmptotich (G, 6-1, Sr.); Mason Luna (G, 6-5, Jr.); Ryan Morrissey (G, 6-3, Jr.); Steven Stafford (G, 6-3, Fr.); Nolan Thompson (G, 6-4, Soph.); Grant Vis (F, 6-3, Soph.); Joshua Wright (G, 5-10, Sr.).

Team notes: The Oilers return two starters plus several other players who made contributions to last year's team that tied for second place in the Sunset League and again reached the CIF Southern Section playoffs. Morrissey, Wright and Mason Luna played significant roles last year. Huntington is hosting a three-game series between teams from the Sunset and Pacific Coast leagues on Dec. 18. Other schedule highlights include the Oilers competing Dec. 21 at the North vs. South Challenge, heading to Florida for the KSA Tournament Dec. 27-Jan. 1, and taking on neighboring Ocean View in an annual nonleague game on Jan. 21.

Coach's outlook: "Last year, was a rebuilding year with several new players," Luna said. "As the year progressed we continued to get better. I was really proud of the team last year. This year's team has a mix of some experience and new faces. Hopefully, we can lean on the returners and continue to grow each game."

Season opener: 6 p.m., Tuesday , vs. Santa Margarita, El Modena/Canyon Kickoff Classic.


Marina Vikings

League: Sunset

Head coach: Nick Racklin (2nd year, 9-18)

Coaching staff: Nick Galloway

2011-12 record: 9-18

2012 league finish: 1-9 (fifth)

2012 CIF results: Reached first round Division 1A playoffs.

Returning starters: Casey Hayes (F, 6-4, Sr.).

Varsity roster: Jake Arledge (G, 5-6, Sr.); Troy Ishino (G, 5-8, Soph.); Brandon Tran (G, 5-8, Sr.); Mitchell Barnes (F, 6-2, Soph.); Greg Fronek (G, 6-1, Soph.); Devonte Douglass (G, 5-10, Sr.); Derek Mallard (G, 5-6, Jr.); Gabe Copper (G, 5-10, Soph.); Ryan Funai (G, 5-9, Jr.); Max Gibbs (F, 6-2, Sr.); Hayden Winks (F, 6-1, Sr.); Micah Herring (G, 5-10, Sr.).

Team notes: The Vikings had a new head coach last year in Racklin and the season took a turn when Hayes broke his league early in the Sunset League season. They did advance to the finals of the Arroyo Grande Tournament earlier in the season, and ended it with a postseason appearance. Gone from the team are several of last year's starters including all-league and varsity veteran player JJ James. This year, the Vikings play at the Palm Springs Maxpreps Holiday Classic, and travel for holiday tournament play to Racklin's alma mater, La Canada.

Coach's outlook: "This is a very young team that has great team chemistry and works well together and has a good basketball IQ as a whole," Racklin said. "If we can knock down open shots and defend like it's the last thing we ever do in life, we will be pretty good."

Season opener: Monday , vs. Gahr, Cerritos Tournament.


Ocean View Seahawks

League: Golden West

Head coach: Tim Walsh (2nd, 24-4)

Coaching staff: Jimmy Harris, Chris Melton

2011-12 record: 24-4

2012 league finish: 10-0 (champion)

2012 CIF results: Reached second round of Division 2AA playoffs.

Returning starters: Josh Mishler (G, 6-5, first-team all-league, Sr.); Kendall Small (G, 6-0, first-team all-league, Soph.).

The roster: Jelani Jackson (G/F, 6-3, Jr.); Reo Washington (F, 6-2, Sr.); Isaiah Wright (G, 6-0, Sr.); Nathan Kosai (G, 6-0, Sr.); Alex Merdjanian (G, 5-10, Jr.); Zarek Osborne (G/F, 6-4, Soph.); Nathaniel Hughes (G, 6-0, Sr.); Dillon Reise (G/F, 6-5, all-league honorable mention, Jr.); Evan Bunin (G, 6-1, Jr.); Khemet Osborne (F/C, 6-6, Jr.); Tyler Burch (G, 6-5, all-league honorable mention, Soph.).

Team notes: The Seahawks went into last season reeling from the death of Jim Harris and in a campaign dedicated to their veteran head coach, reeled off a 24-win season, captured yet another Golden West League title and went into the CIF Southern Section playoffs the top-ranked team in Division 2-AA. They enter a new season without three, key figures from last year's team in Conor Clifford (league co-MVP, first-team All-CIF, now at UC Irvine); Cristian Rivera (league co-MVP, second-team All-CIF), and Robby Weaver (second-team all-league, greyshirt at Cypress College.). Ocean View is hosting the Coaches for a Cause, a nine-game event with proceeds going to the Orange County Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, on Saturday .

Walsh shared head coaching duties last year with Jimmy Harris, son of Jim Harris.

"It was obviously a very tough season," Walsh said. "Dealing with the passing of Coach Harris was extremely difficult for all of us. On the court, we had a really good year. We had an 18-game winning streak before our loss to Thousand Oaks in the playoffs. Off the court, I was very proud how the players rallied around each other and the coaching staff to deal with the tragedy together."

Coach's outlook: "I'm very excited about this team," Walsh said. "We don't have the size we had last year, but we have some guards who can make things happen on both ends of the floor. We were fortunate to have guys like Conor Clifford and Cristian Rivera pulling down rebounds last year, and our challenge will be to attack the boards on both ends."

Season opener: 8 p.m., Saturday , vs. Dana Hills, Coaches for a Cause (Ocean View High).

Twitter: @MikeSciacca

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