CHS boys enthusiastic
Last season, Isaiah Graves shot his way into the Roughies’ record books as one of their all-time leading scorers.
Jaylen Green was the perfect complement to Graves, and the duo paced the team to the district Class 3A semifinals and an overall 15-10 record.
This season, it won’t be as easy. For starters, Graves graduated and Green transferred to Allentown Central Catholic.
As a result, the Roughies are left with primarily an energetic group of seniors and sophomores who are looking to maintain their status.
“Everything is good for us,” said head coach Eric Snyder. “We have a very enthusiastic group of kids who really work with each other. They seem to have a good chemistry.”
Andrew Martinez, D’Angelo Martinez, Jason Schneck, and Cody Velez are the returning seniors, all of whom saw sporadic time last season. Devon Troxell also would have been in the mix, but he suffered a major knee injury and is likely lost for the season.
Troxell’s brother, Devon, will lead of list of budding sophomores featuring 6-foot-4 Derek George. 6-3 Donovan Walakovits, 6-4 Ty Reitz, along with Damian DiPaolo, Mason Hess, and Cole Schiffer. Junior 6-2 Gideon McKenzie is also in the mix.
Andrew Martinez and Derek Troxell are the projected starters, and Snyder expects to mix and match his lineup.
“We have some nice size,” said Snyder. “But these guys are young and they will have to adjust.
They were JV players who are now playing varsity.”
Snyder liked what he saw from a recent scrimmage with Lincoln Leadership and Pottsville Nativity. They scrimmaged Jim Thorpe in their final tuneup Tuesday.
“We did some good things,” he said. “But we are small. We have to push the ball and play a lot of zone. We’ll have trouble playing man against big teams. We have to be able to keep the game in the 40s, and we have to shoot the ball well.”
The Roughies will open the season with their traditional opener against Nazareth at home Friday. They will then begin their league play at Bangor next Tuesday (Dec. 11) and then return home against Salisbury next Thursday (Dec. 13).
“We’ll be challenged,” said Snyder. “But we have a good group of hardworking kids. We will need to try and control the tempo in games as much as we can.”