Friday, May 30, 2008

Beware of TCA in 2008-09

If you will recall, back in late January, I posted interviews with four members of the Trenton Catholic (NJ) basketball team, and also wrote an article on the squad. Well, I'm writing another becasue I think the Iron Mikes will be one of the surprise teams in the hoops hotbed of New Jersey/New York/Pennsylvania. Led by Head Coach Fred Falchi, TCA finished ranked #23 in the Garden State on with a 23-7 record. The squad will not be losing any players to graduation, and its returning members will have another year of maturity under their belt. The Iron Mikes' class of 2009 includes 6'3 forward Daquan Basnight, a guy who plays well above his height and 6'5 power forward Lafayette Smith, a bruising big man. Along with these is 5'7 guard Reggie Coleman, a solid outside shooter, and two others. The team's class of 2010 is phenomenal: 5'9 guard Dondre Whitmore, 6'5 forward Markese Tucker, and 6'4 gaurd Frantz Massenat. Whitmore is a great floor leader with a nice shot from beyond the arc. If Dondre had three more inches on him, he may well be considered one of the best point guards in the class of 2010. Tucker is another kid who, if he had another few inches--two in his case--would be regarded as one of the premiere players in his class amongst forwards. Right now, Tucker can play the 3 or the 4, and although he is built like a power forward, his height and shot make him more suited for the 3. Markese is the definition of a 'tweener, yet the talent is definitely there for the star forward. As for Massenat, he has a stellar all-around game; Frantz can shoot lights-out, run the point, and has solid hops. Frantz is the type of unbreakable baller that every team needs. TCA's class of 2011 isn't too loaded, but one of its members is a star in the making: Khalid Lewis El. The 6'2 guard can shoot, get to the rack, play D, and he is vocal on the court. "Leader," as he is called by his AAU teammates on Team New Jersey ABC, is one of the best class of 2011 players in the tri-state area. Trenton Catholic has the pieces in place to finish in the top 10 in the state, and a top 15 finish is a near lock. The Iron Mikes will dominate the rest of Mercer County and will breeze through their conference schedule, much as they did in 2007-08, when they finished 9-1 in the Burlco League. The only thing the team truly lacks in a dominant big man who stands 6'7+, but Smith, Tucker, and Basnight should be able to make up for that. The team will be experienced, talented, and ready to play, so the rest of New Jersey had better watch out for the Trenton Catholic Iron Mikes.

Note- information on the team's 2007-08 season is from

No comments: