Junior CYO preview

A look into the upcoming CYO season

Many teams will be looking to take home the league title this season

Many teams will be looking to take home the league title this season

Our Lady of Lourdes

        This year’s Lourdes squad has some solid talent, and is self-proclaimed to be the best team in the league. The Tigers have recently gained former Elder Basketball player Zach “Porf” Vorherr, who will add shooting and solid defense. The Tigers also have Josh “Bozzy” Boeckmann and Conner Wilburn, both tall forwards who can drive and shoot. Boeckmann and Wilburn both stand at over six feet, and their size will be important. Lourdes rounds out their top five with Logan Hutzel and Jake Sena. Hutzel is a force inside who eats up rebounds, while Sena is a crafty guard who can also hit from deep. The Tigers have set the bar very high for themselves, and they will have the chance to prove their projections right in the upcoming months.

Our Lady of Visitation

The Vikings look to have another solid season after losing in the city semi-finals last year. The Vikings will be led by star point guard “Magic” Mike Klopp. When Klopp isn’t having candle lit dinners, he is tearing it up on the basketball court. He has gone as far as to guarantee a victory over the Lourdes Tigers, “I’ll make sure that this cocky Lourdes team knows its place in the league.” Trash talk is what makes CYO Basketball great, and Klopp is all over it. Visi also has forward Jake Frey, whose play has been compared to the likes of Blake Griffin. A sleeper for this Visi team is guard Eric “Killer” Mazza, who says even though he probably won’t be seeing the court much, you will definitely know when he is out there. Teams should be aware of this Vikings team as they are out for redemption after last year’s failed championship run.

Our Lady of Victory

The Vipers from Victory are on a mission. Team Captain Sam Hauer says this Vipers team has one goal and that is to bring home a league title. Hauer has been living in the gym ever since their early tournament exit last year. The Vipers are also bringing in top recruit, yours truly, fresh cut from the Elder Basketball program. The Vipers also feature two solid guards hailing from St. X in Alex Klawitter and Carlos Schemmel. One of Victory’s key players also hails from St. X, center Daniel McHale. McHale dominates the middle as a 6 3” monster in the paint. With the abundance of talent the Vipers have, they will stop at nothing to take home a league championship to halls of Victory.

St. Jude

Not a normal powerhouse of the league, this year’s Bulldog team is looking to change that. They have reloaded on talent, bringing in three former Elder Basketball players Matt Peters, Kevin Spurlock, and Josh Rhoads. After an unfortunate fall out of bed, Rhoads’ hand is broken and it’s unclear when he will be able to return to action. The return of Rhoads will be key for this team, as he brings both size and shooting. Peters will bring the shutdown defense this team has been looking for, and Spurlock will be able to create plays. St. Jude also possesses the most underrated player in the league, Nick “Tuchainz” Botuchis. Botuchis has often been compared to Derrick Rose not only in looks, but in style of play. Botuchis has been leading this Bulldog squad for two years with his quickness and ability to get to the hoop. Opposing teams should beware of this crafty point guard. Teams should also beware of the Bulldog’s inside presence, Cole “Water-malon” Tepe, who lives to get rebounds. The Bulldog’s will be in interesting story this year, as they try to thrust themselves to the top of the league.

St. Dominic

Last year, the Blackhawks shocked many by going 9-1 and nearly winning the league. Despite their success last year, the Blackhawks are still considered underdogs to take the league this year. Point guard Andrew Wanger says people should not take the Blackhawks so lightly, “This is a really tough, scrappy squad. People don’t take us serious and we just use that as motivation.” St. Dominic is loaded with guards, led by the likes of Wanger, Patrick “Chino” Morris, and Jason Bleh. The Blackhawks secret weapon is their center Alex “Sarge” Rolfes. Wanger said that Rolfes is definitely a force to be reckoned with on the inside. Look for this underdog team to surprise people again this year.

St. Catherine’s

St. Catherine’s isn’t widely regarded as a powerhouse of the CYO league, but they are a hidden gem. They have an abundance of centers, with Will Neiheisel, Pete Folzenlogen, and St. X Bomber Eric Spolker. With these three centers all towering over the competition, St. Catherine’s dominates both the offensive and defensive boards. While their backcourt lacks talent, they can match up with any team in the league when it comes to points in the paint. If they play their cards right, Catherine’s may be able to really shock some people this season.

St. Al’s

St. Al’s is a notoriously middle of the pack team. They have never been the bottom feeders of the league, but they haven’t had that breakthrough season quite yet. St. Al’s does have some quality talent though. They acquired guard Kevin Young after St. Teresa failed to put a team together for the upcoming season, and he is most likely their best player. Jeff Linneman will also look to make an impact. Expectations are low for St. Al’s this season, but this team will look to turn some heads this season.

St. Antoninus 

St. Antoninus is your definition of a scrappy team. They are not the most talented team, but they use their hard work and tenacity to make up for lack of talent. The expectations are not high for the Jags this year, but point guard Ben James is going as far as to guarantee two victories this year. The Jags also have Louis “L-Train” Faillace running the backcourt alongside James. While their game plan of implementing many half court shots may be frowned upon by the rest of the league, Faillace thinks it will be their secret to success. “It allows us to keep our legs fresh by not having to run down to the other end of the court to be on offense, and also gives us a shot at three points.” The Jags will be doing their best to revolutionize the CYO league this year with their new offense and this season may very well be known as the year the Jags changed CYO Basketball forever.