Lancaster Country Day vs Halifax-D3 1A Boys Championships

Lancaster Country Day's Lance Lennon (4) gives the championship trophy a kiss after beating Halifax to win the District 3 1A Boys Basketball Championships at the Giant Center in Hershey Wednesday Feb. 27, 2019. Lancaster Country Day won 51-43.

A new boys basketball season is upon us. The 2019-20 campaign tips off this weekend for just about every Lancaster-Lebanon League team. League play will begin the next week, followed by holiday tournaments before we get into the thick of the league schedule in January. With that in mind, below is a team-by-team look at all 26 L-L squads across the league's five sections.

*Author's note: The team-by-team previews are presented from Sections One through Five, with each team listed in alphabetical order. The list is not a reflection of a predicted finish for a team. Again, it's just presented in alphabetical order

LNP|LancasterOnline sports reporter John Walk will have you covered on all things L-L boys hoops this season, so feel free to give him a follow on Twitter @JWalkLNP

And while you're at it, feel free to bookmark the LancasterOnline basketball page, and the L-L standings page.


SECTION ONE:

Cedar Crest:

Coach: Tom Smith (10th season, 162-71)

Last year’s record: 18-8 overall, 8-5 league (L-L Section One runner-up, L-L tournament semifinalist, District 3-6A quarterfinalist)

Top players lost: Logan Horn (19.7 ppg, 57 3-pointers), Brody Dunlop (5.6 ppg), Jaquan Andino (3.4 ppg)

Top players returning: Of 10 seniors on the roster, five of them were major contributors last season: 6-7 senior forward Ileri Ayo-Faleye (9.5 ppg), 6-7 senior forward Jason Eberhart (9.4 ppg), senior guard Trey Shutter (5.2 ppg), senior guard Grant Allwein (2.5 ppg) and senior guard Cole Miller (2.4 ppg)

Coach’s thoughts: “I am excited about the returning group of seniors we have and the incoming juniors and sophomores will complement them well. We have a sour taste in our mouth for the way that our season ended last year and are hungry to compete in a tough Section One. We have had a good start to camp and I am hoping to carry that through the long season.”

Cedar Crest team schedule

Hempfield:

Coach: Danny Walck (10th season at Hempfield, 329-248 career record)

Last year’s record: 13-10 overall, 7-6 league (District 3-5A qualifier)

Top players lost: Eli Washington (16.5 ppg, 21 3-pointers), Austin Groft (8.4 ppg, 12 3-pointers), Brad Atkinson (4.2 ppg), Adam Wernoch (3.9 ppg), Ronnie Swantner (2.9 ppg, 15 3-pointers)

Top players returning: junior Ryan Hilton (7.8 ppg, 20 3-pointers), senior Conner Elslager (4.3 ppg, 13 3-pointers), senior Konnor Axe (2.1 ppg), junior Daniel Sears (1.3 ppg), senior Will Hessinger (1.2 ppg)

Coach’s thoughts: “Lancaster-Lebanon League Section One will be very competitive. Cedar Crest and Manheim Township look to be the front-runners in the section. Hempfield's success will be determined by playing hard, playing smart and playing together.”

Hempfield schedule

Manheim Township:

Coach: Matt Johns (fifth season at Manheim Township, 96-62 career record)

Last year’s record: 20-9 overall, 9-4 league (L-L Section One champion, won L-L League tournament for first time in program history, District 3-6A quarterfinalist, PIAA 6A qualifier)

Top players lost: Tyler Crespo (20.8 ppg, 68 3-pointers), Brendan Mellott (12.8 ppg, 21 3-pointers), Tyler Vicidomini (9.1 ppg), Will Greiner (4.1 ppg, 30 3-pointers), Colin Yablonski (1.5 ppg)

Top players returning: senior guard/forward Zach Oldac (10.8 ppg, 29 3-pointers), senior Mickey Stokes (2.3 ppg), senior Ben Mann (0.9 ppg)

Coach’s thoughts: “Our staff was very pleased with how we came along this summer as a team. We certainly look different than the past few years but we still push the pace, share the ball, and have a group of young men willing to settle into roles. I don't think we will be as "combustible" as the past few years but our length, size, and skill at multiple positions will be fun for us to utilize as a staff.”

Manheim Township schedule

McCaskey:

Coach: Freddy Ramos (second season, 11-11 career record)

Last year’s record: 11-11 overall, 8-5 league (finished one spot shy of district playoffs)

Top players lost: Brian McKenzie (12.9 ppg, 19 3-pointers), Ajani Simmons (9.5 ppg, 29 3-pointers), Jashaan Greaves (8.6 ppg), Bryam Menendez (6.1 ppg), Mohammed Nimmons-Francis (4.0 ppg), Tyrell Melendez (1.3 ppg)

Top players returning: senior guard Elijah Terry (transfer from Lancaster Mennonite where he averaged 19.9 ppg with 51 3-pointers and sits at 804 career points), senior forward Makai Ortiz-Gray (9.6 ppg), senior guard Isaiah Thomas (7.9 ppg)

Coach’s thoughts: “We had an active off-season where we regularly worked out together and attended open gyms. We also participated in a few summer leagues, team camps and team trips. Proud of our senior leaders, who have been setting the tone for our underclassmen. We play a demanding schedule this year and are approaching it one game at a time. Effort and communication are focal points for us. We are ready to represent our town, Lancaster city, and hope to consistently work hard and compete.  One Tornado, One Family......McCaskey Proud!”

McCaskey schedule

Penn Manor:

Coach: Larry Bellew (eighth season, 46-107 career record)

Last year’s record: 11-11 overall, 5-8 league

Top players lost: Ty Erisman (12.2 ppg, 48 3-pointers), Kevin Roldan (12.1 ppg, 22 3-pointers), Jakob Matias (5.0 ppg), Anthony Rosario (4.1 ppg)

Top players returning: senior Ethan Hine (12.1 ppg, 39 3-pointers), senior Jaden Matias (4.6 ppg), senior Joel Modesto (1.9 ppg), senior Tim Hermansen (0.9 ppg)

Coach’s thoughts: “Other than Hine and Matias, the roster is filled with inexperience.  We have 11 other guys competing for major minutes and roles within the rotation.  I've been very pleased with our off-season commitment and our effort in our early-season practices.  In our scrimmages versus Hershey and Lancaster Catholic on Nov. 26, our inexperience and lack of understanding what it takes to win at the varsity level was exposed. It was a struggle for us that night but it was a great learning experience for us.  We will struggle to find our flow until we play with more consistency. Offensively we need to be more aggressive. We moved the ball well but didn't attack the defense when the opportunities presented themselves. I ultimately believe we have a number of pieces that could contribute to a successful season.  How quickly we understand our strengths, commit to playing defense, and accept our roles will determine how soon we turn the corner. It will also be an interesting puzzle for me to find how the different pieces fit together.”

Penn Manor schedule


SECTION TWO:

Conestoga Valley:

Coach: Brad Herr (12th season, 114-156)

Last year’s record: 3-18 overall, 1-12 league

Top players lost: Joe Cardina (8.6 ppg), Jordan Ransing (7.1 ppg), Parker Graff (5.7 ppg), J’Vhante Perkins (4.6 ppg)

Top players returning: Senior guard Bradley Stoltzfus (10.9 ppg), senior guard/forward Will Stone (3.1 ppg), junior guard Luke Rumbaugh (2.7 ppg), junior guard Sawyer Shertzer (1.9 ppg)

Coach’s thoughts: “We focus on controlling that which we can control and making the next play. Season-ending injuries will present challenges for our squad, but we will also embrace opportunities for players to step up and assume greater roles at the varsity level. The learning curve will be steep, but we have perhaps the highest number of Honors students of any roster in recent memory, so we are expecting our players to learn quickly and overcome adversity. A lack of height and a guard-heavy roster will necessitate an up tempo style of play at both ends of the floor.”

Conestoga Valley schedule

Elizabethtown:

Coach: Rocky Parise (fourth season, 32-42 career record)

Last year’s record: 17-13 overall, 8-5 league (L-L Section Two runner-up, L-L tournament semifinalist, District 3-5A quarterfinalist, PIAA 5A qualifier)

Top players lost: Larry Locker (19 ppg), Amos Kollie (7.1 ppg), Dylan Sweger (5.2 ppg)

Top players returning: senior guard/forward Elijah Eberly (9.7 ppg), senior point guard Ryan Parise (9.3 ppg, 26 3-pointers), junior guard/forward Luke Pierson (7.2 ppg, 29 3-pointers) senior guard Brody Beach (4 ppg, 33 3-pointers)

Coach’s thoughts: “We had a great off-season.  We have a lot of guys playing AAU Basketball and had great turnouts for our weightlifting and open gyms. We have a few players who have improved more in one off-season than I have ever seen in my 13 years of coaching.  As a team, we saw the results of that hard work with a lot of success this off-season.  Hopefully, we can continue that when it really matters this winter.”

Elizabethtown schedule

Ephrata:

Coach: Jonathan Treese (third season at Ephrata, 39-97 career coaching record)

Last year’s record: 3-18 overall, 1-12 league

Top players lost: Xavian Rodriguez (16.9 ppg), Zachary McGillan (6.3 ppg), Jared Groff (6.2 ppg), Alex Nelson (2 ppg)

Top players returning: senior Lyle Kopp (8.5 ppg, 10 3-pointers), senior Jaron Heckstall 3.3 ppg), junior Parker Hawes (2.6 ppg), sophomore Mason Hagen (2.5 ppg), senior Allenrobert Nelson (1.5 ppg)

Coach’s thoughts: “The team is returning four players with a great deal of varsity experience. A number of underclassmen are talented and could emerge as varsity players this year. If guard play improves, Ephrata could be very competitive. Senior Lyle Kopp has the tools for a very good senior season and has worked hard on improving his game. Allenrobert Nelson has steadily improved and could be a breakout player as a senior. ...the return of Jaron Heckstall and Mason Hagen to the backcourt could be potential for a large improvement. ...We are looking to be dynamic defensively and have an ability to control pace of the game. If we limit our turnovers and rebound, we will have the opportunity to win games.”

Ephrata schedule

Lebanon:

Coach: Tim Speraw (10th season, 126-97 career record)

Last season: 11-11 overall, 6-7 league

Top players lost: Scottie Porter (13.5 ppg, 28 3-pointers), Jahlil Young (6.9 ppg)

Top players returning: junior Isaiah Rodriguez (8.5 ppg), senior Raylin Pena (8.1 ppg, 41 3-pointers), sophomore Luke Collins (4.9 ppg, 14 3-pointers), senior Jean Bontemps (2.2 ppg), sophomore Marquis Ferreira (1.8 ppg)

Coach’s thoughts: “We do not have a lot of size after Isaiah Rodriguez, the Cedars QB in the fall, so we’ll rely a lot on our guard play. We’ll need to rebound well against bigger teams. We will need some newcomers to step into important roles to help give us some depth. I would say Warwick and E-town will be the two teams to beat again in the section. If we can steal some wins from them, we will have a shot at getting back to the top of the section.”

Lebanon schedule

Warwick:

Coach: Chris Christensen (fifth season, 35-55 career record)

Last year’s record: 17-8 overall, 12-1 league (L-L Section Two champion, L-L tournament runner-up, District 3-6A qualifier)

Top players lost: Ryan Shirk (12.6 ppg, 45 3-pointers), Colby Martin (8.6 ppg, 49 3-pointers), Brock Fassnacht (6.7 ppg), Trysten George (5.0 ppg)

Top players returning: junior Joey McCracken (12.8 ppg, 39 3-pointers), junior Caleb Schmitz (4.7 ppg), senior Conor Adams (3.9 ppg), junior Kai Cipalla (1.9 ppg), senior Ethan Minnich

Coach’s thoughts:"We are excited about the upcoming season. We lost a really nice group of seniors, but have some key returners as well. We are looking forward to having some new faces step into major roles for our team."

Warwick schedule


SECTION THREE:

Cocalico:

Coach: Seth Sigman (fourth season, 29-41 career record)

Last year’s record: 15-11 overall, 7-6 league (District 3-5A qualifier, finished one win shy of qualifying for PIAA Class 5A tournament)

Top players lost: Connor Mack (13.6 ppg, 42 3-pointers), Brady Nuneville (8 ppg),  Ben Karbe (8.7 ppg, 40 3-pointers)

Top players returning: junior Carter Nuneville (6.5 ppg, 18 3-pointers), senior Trey Griffen (4.9 ppg), senior Ronald Zahm (1.8 ppg)

Coach thoughts: “We have a few key guys returning from last year that we expect big things out of. We have some very talented young guys that we’re going to throw into the fire this year, so we need them to grow up quickly if we’re going to be successful. We graduated a lot of our scoring from last year so we need guys to step in and fill those roles. I’m very excited about our group of young men, and if everyone buys into their roles we can have a very good season.”

Cocalico schedule

Garden Spot:

Coach: Nate Musselman (second season, 16-13 career record)

Last year’s record: 16-13 overall, 10-3 league (L-L Section Three runner-up, L-L tournament quarterfinalist, District 3-5A quarterfinalist, PIAA 5A qualifier)

Top players lost: Keontae Nunn (15.6 ppg, 38 3-pointers), Matthew Sharp (4.5 ppg), Austin Skowood (3.1 ppg), Josiah Snader (1 ppg)

Top players returning: Senior Andrew Zentner (10.7 ppg, 16 3-pointers), Jon Morales (8.7 ppg), junior Joseph Sharp (2.9 ppg), junior John Dykie (2.5 ppg)

Coach’s thoughts: “This team will be one of the taller teams we have sent to the floor at GS.  I hope our length will help us out defensively and on the rebounding front. ...We need to improve defensively and shooting from the free-throw line. As the season wore on last year, our defensive intensity started to wane and teams were starting to score at a higher pace. That cannot happen for us to be successful this year. ...This group will and already does share the ball better than last year’s team. Of course, without a dominant scorer in the lineup, the ball will have to move effectively for us to perform on offense. ...Andrew will and should get touches around the rim, the attention he commands should open the floor for his teammates. Andrew is fun to coach because he is our best three-point shooter as well, so he is a nice inside/outside threat. ...Our expectation is to compete and be aggressive every game. If we do that, our team goals have a chance to come to fruition.”

Garden Spot schedule

Lampeter-Strasburg:

Coach: Ed Berryman (fourth season, 66-21 career record)

Last year’s record: 23-5 overall, 12-1 league (L-L Section Three champion, L-L tournament quarterfinalist, District 3-5A quarterfinalist, PIAA 5A qualifier)

Top players lost: Adam Stoltzfus (9.3 ppg), Chase Broderick (9.0 ppg, 64 3-pointers), Zach Kingsley (8.8 ppg, 29 3-pointers), Patrick Holmes (7.6 ppg, 27 3-pointers), Nevin Book (3.7 ppg), Jarred Getchis (3.6 ppg)

Top players returning: Senior point guard Seth Beers (12.4 ppg, 59 3-pointers, 468 career points), senior Darin Landis (2.1 ppg), senior Caleb Smoker (2 ppg)

Coach’s thoughts: “I am excited about this upcoming season. We have a group of seniors that have worked extremely hard for their opportunity to lead our program. We are led by Seth Beers, who sets the bar high each and every practice as he is the hardest working player on the team. We do have some injuries to potential key contributors but this offers a great opportunity for some underclassmen who have shown they are ready to compete at the varsity level. ...I believe the section will be very competitive and if you don't come ready to compete each night, then any team in our section can beat you. Our number one goal each year is to win our section and that remains our top priority.”

Lampeter-Strasburg schedule

Manheim Central:

Coach: Charlie Fisher (third season at Manheim Central, 36-55 career record)

Last year’s record: 9-13 overall, 5-8 league

Top players lost: Chase Marquette (10.9 ppg, 38 3-pointers), Cameron Sell (10.5 ppg), Colton Book (7.6 ppg), Josh Young (4.6 ppg), Drew Mummau (4.2 ppg), Carson Brenize (3.6 ppg), Evan Hosler (2.7 ppg)

Top players returning: junior Cam Eberly (2.5 ppg)

Coach’s thoughts: “With only having one senior and one returning player with consistent varsity minutes, we are very young and inexperienced. With that said, we have a lot of guys who have been working hard to get ready for big boy basketball and are excited for the season. We have goals to grow and improve as a team, as we look to compete night after night.”

Manheim Central

Solanco:

Coach: David Long (first season)

Last year’s record: 3-19 overall, 2-11 league

Top players lost: Dawson Kreider (13.3 ppg, 57 3-pointers), Zach Wiker (6.8 ppg, 44 3-pointers), Tyler Whisman (5.5 ppg), Carson Kilgore (5.3 ppg)

Top players returning: junior Zed Baker (6.8 ppg, 44 3-pointers), senior Dom Messano (5.5 ppg), senior Jalen Henry (4.7 ppg), junior Colesen Shaeffer (3.7 ppg), junior Jordan Rush (2.3 ppg), junior Ryan Smith (1.5 ppg)

Coach’s thoughts: “I think we have a chance to be really good defensively this season. We have spent a lot of time over the summer working on individual defense so that we do not have to rely on our back side rotations as much. With how guard-heavy our team is I think that will help us guard the ball a lot better this season. …Our decision-making has improved a lot over the summer. We are starting to learn how valuable each possession is, which is leading us to make the sure pass and not the 50-50 pass. Our shot selection has also improved, to where we will run our stuff until we get a great look….Competition is something that we have talked a lot about since the summer and into the fall. In practice we keep score a lot and try to usually have a winner and a looser. This has helped our guys raise their energy levels by wanting to win. ...I am not sure exactly where we are going to fit into the section race and honestly we rarely talk about that. Right now we are putting all of our focus on building an identity and culture at Solanco. We are trying to be known by our toughness and we hope that our playing style is an indicator of that. And for our culture we are trying to instill a culture of humility, which we define as thinking of others more than you think of yourself, on and off the court. So, I am not sure where we will fit in the section this year, but I believe if we play to our identity and culture the results will take care of themselves.”

Solanco schedule


SECTION FOUR:

Elco:

Coach: Brad Conners (ninth season, 83-105 career record)

Last year’s record: 14-12 overall, 9-4 league (L-L Section Four runner-up, L-L tournament qualifier, District 3-4A quarterfinalist, one game shy of qualifying for states)

Top players lost: Zach Hackman

Top players returning: junior guard Braden Bohannon (12.4 ppg, 40 3-pointers), senior center Asher Kemble (11 ppg), senior guard Bryce Coletti (10.5 ppg, 32 3-pointers), senior guard Evan Huey (7.5 ppg, 30 3-pointers), senior guard Angel Martinez (3.1 ppg), senior forward Jordan Fernandez (2.7 ppg), senior guard Ben Horst (2.4 ppg), senior forward Mitchel Gray (1.8 ppg), sophomore forward Luke Williams (1.6 ppg)

Coach’s thoughts: “There’s a lot of excitement about this team. We are returning every player but one from last year’s team. We lost Zach Hackman to graduation but we are returning all five starters as well as reserves who saw significant time off of the bench. We had a real nice offseason and are hoping to build on that in the preseason. We are just looking to get better everyday with each practice and scrimmage. Our focus is and has been on the defensive end. We are hoping to be a little stingier this year and it starts with ball pressure. With that said, we also hope to improve our transition defense and rebounding of the basketball.”

Elco schedule

Donegal:

Coach: Kevin Dolan (third season at Donegal, previously coached nine seasons at Elizabethtown, 120-145 career coaching record)

Last year’s record: 0-22 overall, 0-13 league

Top players lost: Reed Licopoli (10.1 ppg), Logan Nauman (3.5 ppg), Dalton Mullhausen (2.4 ppg), Zion Gibbs (1.8 ppg)

Top players returning: senior Ryan Zuch (11.6 ppg, 27 3-pointers), senior Patrick Summers (5.3 ppg, 20 3-pointers), senior Jacob Shoemaker (5.3 ppg), junior Conor Wilken (1.4 ppg), junior Luke Yunginger (1.2 ppg), junior Gavin Hawk (1.1 ppg)

Coach's thoughts: "We have a lot of work to do, but players are excited about the new season.  We have returning players who received a lot of playing time last year so we have to see how their improvement shows up on the court.  We are also excited about our younger players.  Our roster is stronger and we look forward to watching all the players grow as individuals and as a team."

Donegal schedule

Lancaster Catholic:

Coach: Joe Klazas (15th season, 282-106 career record)

Last year’s record: 17-11 overall, 10-3 league (L-L Section Four champion, L-L tournament quarterfinalist, District 3-4A runner-up, PIAA 4A second round)

Top players lost: Johnny Besecker (12.1 ppg, 51 3-pointers), Dwayne Caine (11.5 ppg, 18 3-pointers), Justin Baker (2.8 ppg), Andy Santiago (2.2 ppg)

Top players returning: senior David Kamwanga (11.1 ppg, 18 3-pointers), senior Denzel Kabasele (6.7 ppg), junior Devon Atkinson (5.3 ppg), senior Trey Wells (4.9 ppg), junior Ross Conway (3.3 ppg), senior Calen Titus (1.7 ppg), senior Kolbe Card (1.5 ppg)

Coach’s thoughts: “Our schedule is tough. We will have battles night in and night out. Section and league are very balanced, with a bunch of really solid teams, so we will need to be at our best to have chances to win.”

Lancaster Catholic schedule

Northern Lebanon:

Coach: Chris George (fifth season at Northern Lebanon, 125-91 career record)

Last year’s record: 6-16 overall, 3-10 league

Top players lost: Josh Bowers (12.2 ppg, 22 3-pointers), Eyan Margut (2.7 ppg)

Top players returning: sophomore Peyton Wolfe (8.2 ppg, 49 3-pointers), senior Ethan Borcky (6.8 ppg, 31 3-pointers), senior Alex Folmer (5.9 ppg, 19 3-pointers), junior Nate Shirk (3.7 ppg), junior Josh Clemmer (1.4 ppg), junior Owen Treadway (1.3 ppg)

Coach’s thoughts: “We've had a great off season and hope to continue that into the tip-off. We have eight of our top-10 kids back and some new blood as well, so our practices have been super competitive and we're hoping to rely on that depth this season. Losing two gritty, tough seniors that knew how to win won't be easy to replace. That's the big question mark for us as well as seeing how much our eight returnees improved enough to take the next step. We weren't sure we'd win one game last year, let alone six, and lose another four to five in overtime or at the buzzer (due to graduating 11 seniors the year before) so hope is high, but the kids know they'll have to earn making the jump they want to. Our section is insanely tough this year as well, maybe outside Section One or Two, the toughest in the L-L with Elco, Octorara and Lancaster Catholic all bringing back key pieces, big men and, in Elco's case, literally their whole team. The challenge is a formidable one but our kids our pumped and energized. We're going to have a young group again,  so they will fight every game and all season to the end.”

Northern Lebanon schedule

Octorara:

Coach: Gene Lambert (19th season, 237-209 career record)

Last year’s record: 14-11 overall (District 3-4A quarterfinalist)

Top players lost: Alex Lantz (11.4 ppg), Leon Brown (5.0 ppg)

Top players returning: junior forward Naji Hamilton (12.5 ppg), senior Keith Lambert (11.1 ppg, 31 3-pointers), senior Matt Keating (6.4 ppg), junior Phillip Brandon (5.7 ppg), senior Jason Brown (2.8 ppg), senior Brian James (2.6 ppg)

Coach’s thoughts: “I believe that we will be competitive this year. We have a few solid pieces coming back. Keith Lambert, Brian James and Matt Keating have been playing together since fifth grade. Naji Hamilton is getting better every day. Jason Brown has emerged as a solid point guard. Phillip Brandon is a junior that was able to score in bunches last year as a sophomore.”

Octorara schedule


SECTION FIVE:

Annville-Cleona:

Coach: Jason Coletti (second season at Annville-Cleona, 126-135 career coaching)

Last year’s record: 12-10 overall, 5-5 league (District 3-33A quarterfinalist)

Top players lost: Dashaun Archer (9.1 ppg)

Top players returning: senior Andrew Long (15.7 ppg, 38 3-pointers), senior Adam Long (8.7 ppg), senior Jeremy Bours (6.3 ppg), junior Yadiel Cruz (5.5 ppg, 22 3-pointers)

Coach’s thoughts: “We have a lot of team speed and athleticism returning. We were inexperienced last year with only one senior on the varsity roster, but we now are returning five seniors with experience. We will look for this group of seniors to lead us this season. The experience of playing in districts last year was very beneficial for us.”

Annville-Cleona schedule

Columbia:

Coach: Kerry Glover (fourth season, 34-36 record)

Last year’s record: 9-14 overall, 7-3 league (L-L tournament qualifier, District 3-3A quarterfinalist)

Top players lost: None

Top players returning: junior Michael Poole (10.7 ppg, 29 3-pointers), senior Matt McCleary (10.5 ppg, 28 3-pointers), sophomore Kerry Glover (9.2 ppg), junior Luis Cruz (7.7 ppg), senior Ryan Redding (6.5 ppg), junior Brady Smith (5 ppg), 23 3-pointers), sophomore Robert Footman (20 3-pointers)

Coach’s thoughts: ”As far as areas of strength/improvement for this group is just having a year to mature. They were so young last year and having no seniors had a huge impact. They competed well and learned a lot. Last year brought them closer together and helped them grow. Realistic goals for the group is to just compete hard each night and have no hangovers. If they do that, then they have a chance of improving from last year.”

Columbia schedule

Lancaster Country Day:

Coach: Jon Shultz (second season, 20-5 career record)

Last year’s record: 20-5 overall, 7-3 league (District 3-1A champion, PIAA 1A second round)

Top players lost: Andrew Williams (9.9 ppg, 19 3-pointers), Bradley Fry (8.9 ppg), Luke Walling (7.8 ppg), Will Lisk (5.6 ppg, 13 3-pointers), Konrad Lojewski (1.2 ppg)

Top players returning: junior Lance Lennon (9.9 ppg), sophomore John Stewart (1.8 ppg), sophomore Grant Landis (1.4 ppg), senior Greg Mizii (1.3 ppg)

Coach’s thoughts: “This is a talented group of young players who are excited to forge their own path to success. We have some versatile players who like to get up and down the floor but at the same time are disciplined and smart enough to play a controlled half-court game. We are going to be looking to create some havoc on the defensive side of the ball and be opportunistic in transition. Our roster is young and relatively inexperienced, so as a group we need to maintain a strong work ethic, compete hard in practice every day, and make sure we identify the areas where each player can maximize their individual strengths. If we do these things, I am excited to see where we stand when the dust settles in Section Five.”

Lancaster Country Day schedule

Lancaster Mennonite:

Coach: Seth Buckwalter (second season, 14-13 career record)

Last year’s record: 14-13 overall, 9-1 league (L-L Section Five champion, L-L tournament quarterfinalist, District 3-3A semifinalist, PIAA 3A qualifier)

Top players lost: Elijah Terry (19.9 ppg, 51 3-pointers), Elijah Bynum (12.3 ppg, 44 3-pointers), Naim Taylor (8.3 ppg), Derrick Burnside (5.2 ppg, 26 3-pointers), Seth Harmer (2.4 ppg), Joel Horst (1.9 ppg), Ebba Dinka (5.2 ppg, 26 3-pointers), Myles Jones (1.7 ppg)

Top players returning: senior Justin Horst (5.3 ppg)

Coach’s thoughts: “I really feel blessed to be able to work with this group of young men. We are looking forward to a great season. With no returning starters from last year, we are lacking in experience to start the season, but I think this year’s players will transition into their new roles nicely. This is a hard-working group that will compete every time we step on the floor. Early in the season, our focus is on establishing team identity and having everyone feel comfortable with their roles.  We expect to be competitive in our section.”

Lancaster Mennonite schedule

Lebanon Catholic:

Coach: William “Wee” Sanchez (third season, 15-27 career record)

Last year’s record: 9-12 overall, 2-8 league

Top players lost: Devin Root (12 ppg, 34 3-pointers), Sam Heagy (10.8 ppg), Alberto Moreno (2.8 ppg), Andrew McCafferty (2.3 ppg)

Top players returning: junior Mark Gates (5.6 ppg, 20 3-pointers), sophomore Peter Skulski (5.5 ppg), senior Albert O’Rawe (2.3 ppg), junior Jacob Martino (1.5 ppg), sophomore Nickloas Cruz-Buck (1.2 ppg)

Coach’s thoughts: “One biggest strength this year that the group has is their chemistry.  They all get along on and off the court, which will be a great asset to our team. They take the “TEAM” approach and not the “I” approach which is fun to watch. We will definitely have a few streaky shooters that will be able to fill it up on any given night. Our bigs have added some muscle strength over the summer which will support us under the basket. We should also have a deeper bench from last year. ...Another big highlight for our upcoming year, our gym on “Assumption Hill” went through a complete renovation this past summer and it looks like a brand new gym. ...We will be a young team with only one senior on the roster. We’ll need to continue to improve on putting points on the scoreboard and become a more balanced scoring team with everyone contributing, and becoming a better defensive team playing with aggressiveness and energy for the entire game. ...Our goals will continue to be to battle for section championships, districts and states.”

Lebanon Catholic schedule

Pequea Valley:

Coach: Thad Rittenhouse (third season, 3-41 career record)

Last year’s record: 0-22 overall, 0-10 league

Top players lost: Andrew Sudbrack (2.5 ppg)

Top players returning: junior Devon Colyer (18.8 ppg, 37 3-pointers), sophomore Sean Liney (7.1 ppg, 21 3-pointers), junior Antonio Lazar (5.9 ppg), sophomore Nevin Stoltzfus (5.6 ppg), senior Tyrell Stoltzfus (2.8 ppg), sophomore Jonathan Carter (1.4 ppg), junior Luke Henry Peifer (0.3 ppg)

Coach's thoughts: “Last year was a tough year due to few in numbers as well as youth and inexperience. This year we have more boys on the team and some that are new to the program. We have put a lot more time in during the offseason, which has helped prepare us for the season. Even though we are still young with only one senior, we will be more competitive this year. We still have a lot of work to do, but I’ve been happy with the progress these boys have made. They are excited to get started.”

Pequea Valley schedule