CYO season preview and rankings

western basketball conference homepage

western basketball conference homepage

Every year when the weather starts to get a little chillier there’s always one topic that arises and sweeps through the west side. The question that everyone is always wondering “who’s going to take home the CYO state high school basketball championship”. Well I’m here to give you a little preview or sneak peek for this upcoming season with key players and rankings.

These are the top 12 teams that run the western conference league.

12. St. Teresa Bruins: The Bruins have always struggled throug the last couple of years in basketball. They just never really had enough kids to throw together a solid team but they do have one stand out player. Sam Otten, the chosen one to come out of Teresa. The man is treated like a legend and runs the small Price Hill school. He will do all he can this year to bring the Bruins up to a top spot in the conference. Record prediction: (2-8).

11. St. John’s Dry Ridge Blue Jays: If I had to rank the most hated CYO team  in the league the Blue Jays would take the top spot. Just a bunch of hacks that cry about every single call. They have trouble putting up points but as we all know CYO refs are pretty well blind so they get away with the numerous amount of fouls they produce. They have “stellar” defense but you can’t win if you can’t score. Season prediction: (4-6).

10. Our Lady of Lourdes Tigers: The Tigers have unlimited potential but are the laziest team in the league. Lourdes has a couple former Elder Panther basketball players such as Josh Masminster and Johnny Short that could do some damage in the conference if they were motivated. They had a shaky season last year because of team chemistry and I don’t see it looking any different this year. Season prediction: (4-6).

9. St. Al’s Gators: This Gators team is considered a wild card. I think that’s what makes them such a tough team because no one knows much about them. All we really know is their gym floor sucks. It’s like an ice rink in that old dusty gym. Overall worst place to play a basketball game. Season prediction: (5-5)

8. St. Ignatius Wildcats: The Wildcats were the dream team back in grade school. They were the team to beat back in the day. But the tables have turned throughout the years. Yes, they have some talent especially with big guys. Josh Powell and Graham Koenig towering over everyone else but what a soft duo. All you have to do is push them around a little and they back down right away, especially Powell. Such an easy team to rattle and get into their heads. If those two can pull it together they can be a decent team once again. Season prediction: (5-5).

7. St. Dominic Blackhawks: With two of their best players playing high school basketball it makes it tough for them to compete. Dominic has always been the underdogs in whatever they do, but that’s how they like it.

Matt Dugan free throw
Matt Dugan shoots a free throw during his previous glory days for Elder

They like upsetting teams and ruining their playoff chances. Not a whole lot of talent on this team but damn do they have heart. If you’re talking about a team that hustles for loose balls and plays hardnosed defense this is that team. Matt Dugan and Connor Lohmiller could be considered one of the best dynamic duos in the league. Last year they snuck into the playoffs and I see that happening again this year. Season prediction: (5-5).

6. St. Jude Bulldogs: The Bulldogs are one of the most talented teams in the league. They should be though; they have their whole A team from grade school. The thing they struggle with most is team chemistry because of the only Oak Hills kid on the team. Believe me when I say that kid is the most hated kid in the league. An overall awful basketball player with an even worse attitude. If they take care of that issue and Ross Mullen can step up they can be a very successful team. Season prediction: (6-4).

5. St. James Panthers: James consist of a bunch of LaSalle Lancers that have a cocky attitude when they have no reason to. They are also considered a wild card team because not many people know a lot about them besides their personalities stink. If this was a popularity contest they would finish dead last but it’s not so they take the five spot in the rankings. Season prediction: (6-4).

4. St. Williams Blue Knights: The Knights aren’t the most popular team in the conference, but they have some ball players. Some kids you wouldn’t expect to be athletic make this team so unique. They are considered the scrappiest team in the league and that’s where they get all their success. The key to beating this team is to get into the heads of some of their main players. Once that is done the whole team shuts down even their hard guy coach. Season prediction: (7-3).

3. St. Antoninus Jaguars: A couple of pure basketball players carry this team. Bradley Simonson is good for 12 to 15 points a game if not more and try hard Jeff Koopman is good for about 40 rebounds and 40 missed put backs. Also repping the Jaguars is Riley “I do it all” Rueve who does just about everything else but “it all”. They always find a way to grind out wins which makes the Jags a tough squad. Season prediction: (8-2).

2. Our Lady of Victory Vipers: The Vipers have nothing but A team player from grade school. They split their teams so unfairly that it is almost stupid. But, that’s why they have been so successful over the years and I don’t see anything changing this year. Cameron Hoinke, being the backbone of the Vipers trash talking game knows how to get into opponent’s heads which gives them the edge every game. Tough team to beat but it is possible. Season prediction: (9-1).

1. Our Lady of Visitation Vikings: I don’t see this staked Vikings team losing a game this season. With an

Austin O'brien free throw
Austin O’brien shoots a free throw

unreal addition this year, Austin O’brien who was a former Elder hooper taking the big man role on an already large team. There are absolutely no flaws in this Vikings lineup. Not much of a trash talking team but they take care of their business on the court. With Lucas Downey and Zach Dehner ripping just about every rebound off the boards and three point slingers, Zach Lyons and Quinn Earley behind the arc, this team is damn near flawless. The only upside about playing the Vikings is you get to see Quinn Earley’s girlfriend in the stands. Season prediction: (10-0)

Should be an interesting season come December. As long as all teams stay healthy I don’t see this conference playing out any other way. Once playoff time comes around, it’s anybody’s game so don’t sleep on the underdogs. There’s only one goal this year for every team and that’s a state championship.

CYO state basketball tournament
CYO state basketball tournament