WIZ Preseason Predictions and Player Rankings (2007-2008)

Sport: Basketball (boys)

Posted: November 28th, 2007 by Tom Nolette


WIZ Preseason Predictions and Player Rankings (2007-2008)
(Plus WIZ Top 10 Teams)
By The wIZ

Wow its that time of year again folks. This summer flew by faster than ever and hoops season is almost here. As always it time for The WIZ to make his preseason predictions and give you his preseason player rankings. This is going to be another very exciting year in all four classes. Will any of the teams repeat and take home back-to-back Gold Balls? Or could Calais get a 3-Peat? We shall find out this coming March 1st. As I have done in previous years I will give you my predictions in all four classes East and West with my picks for the top 3 teams and 3 sleeper teams that could surprise us all. Plus my prediction on who will win the State Title in each class. Then I will give you my preseason player rankings and finally my Top 10 teams heading into week # 1.

Class A East:

The defending State Champions the Bangor Rams will look to repeat. Gone are Alex Gallant and Troy Jellison but the Rams are still loaded with talent. Back are Lee The Alaskan Assassin Suvlu, Adam Bernstein, Ryan Weston, Billy Zolper and UMaine bound Jon McAllian. Still cant figure out why he didnt get much PT last year but I think this year Jon will explode for the Rams. Coach Reed is one of the best coaches out there, he has the talent, they have the tradition, can this lead them to Back-To-Back Gold Balls?

Next up I like the Hampden Broncos. The Broncos lose Evan Farley and Dan McCue but Antonio Juco is back along with Justin Brown and Brad Haase and watch out for the Super Sophs Jacob Moore and Noah Burditt these two are going to be very good.

Up next I like the Eddies of Edward Little. The Eddies will be looking for a little revenge after making a quick exit from the tournament last year. Sure they lose Troy Barnies and his brother Travis but back are veterans Kyle Philbrook, Eric Prue, Ben Harnett and Muktar Sharif. Look for Coach Adams to have this team near the top come tourney time.

Sleeper teams:

The Cony Rams lost to Messalonskee in the quarter-finals last year by 1pt. and they will look to go deeper in the tournament this year. They lose the Lui brothers Brian and Jason along with John Demerchant and Chris Thurston but they still have talent in the likes of Andrew Pullen, Cameron OBrien, Greg ONeil and Brian Carville. Plus watch out for the youngster Sophomore Jason Burns. Coach Hunt knows what he is doing, hes got some talent and the Rams will look to surprise come tourney time.

Up next I like The Eagles of Messalonskee. Sure they lose Big Guns in Matt Natole, Nicholas Ouellete and Eric Taylor but they return a Big Gun in Orlando Holmes and he will get some help from Ben Dubois, Dominic Berndt, Josh Gilbert, Zach Brann, and Chris Pelletier. The Eagles look to make another good run.

The Mount Blue Cougars lose a ton. Noah Paytas, Isasiah Brathwaite, Auther Trask, Adam Gilbert, and Mike Toothaker the whole starting five are gone but Coach Bessey rebuilds and reloads. The young Cougars might be a year or two away but they have some young talent that will be very good come tourney time. Senior Joe Gilbert will lead the way with an excellent group of juniors in Ben Russell, Jason Sawyer and Devon Zamboni. Plus the Cougars will have some talent in the Sophomore and Freshmen classes. And an added plus; word is out that Bessey has a new Assistant coach in the likes of Aaron Howard. Put all these ingredients together and the Cougars have a very bright future ahead for the next few years.

Class A West:

In the West I really like the Cheverus Stags to come out on top this year. The Stags lose three key players due to graduation. Anthony Savino, Christian Van Loenen and Eric Friend are gone plus Sophomore Walter Stover has transferred to Portland. But the legendary Coach Bobby Brown has plenty of talent coming back. What they really need this year is a true point guard and they get one! Indiana Faithfull a Sophomore moved to Maine from Australia. The kid can play. He has exceptional passing skills and he runs and plays the floor very well. He looks to have an excellent Bball IQ. He can penetrate, finish or dish off and dont leave him open behind the 3-point line. The Stags also have one of the states top Juniors in Mick DiStasio along with seasoned vets Doug Alston and Alex Fraser plus some more very good Juniors in big man Ian Barwise, Peter Foley, Dan Foster and Billy White. Look for the Stags to play a very tough defense and to run the floor this season.

Up next I like the Portland Bulldogs. Coach Russo loses Andrew Duncanson, Ryan Carmichael and Anthony Ciccarelli. But the Bulldogs have plenty coming back. You know the Dogs would love another shot at the Gold Ball after their loss to Bangor in the State Game last March and they just might very well get that shot. Back for the Bulldogs are Seniors Jake Longstaff, Justin Powell, Anthony Passmore, and Kelly Lamar. Junior Charlie Ho along with a very talented Sophomore class in Joe Zukowski, Koang Thok and Miles Carey-Snow. Plus they get a top transfer Senior Mike Harmon from Bonny Eagle, and they also get Junior Eddie Bogdanovich from South Portand, plus a senior who was injured last season big man Dewayne Alberte. Dewayne had an impressive summer. Watch out for the Bulldogs they will be tough and they very well could be back chasing the Gold.

Next up the Deering Rams. The Rams would love to get back to the State game as well and believe me they do have a shot at it. Coach Dan LeGage will be in his 6th year at the helm for the Rams along with assistant coach Jon Maloney and the Rams get a new assistant coach former Bonny Eagle/UMF star Jon Bird to help the cause. The Rams do lose big man Brandon Carbone, Adam Requia and the Feisty little point guard Pat Plourd but the Rams have the rest back! One of the states top players Kyle Donovan with vets Ronald Abwoch (watch out for him this year) Chris Smith, Tim Conley and the big guy 66 Nicholas Burkhardt along with some underclassmen Parker Dodd. Khader Abbas and Regan Flaherty; Plus Super Soph Eddie Tirabassi. The Rams will be right back in the hunt and they could steal the whole show.

Sleeper teams:

The South Portland Red Riots will be very good this year. The Riots lose their legendary coach Tony DiBiase. Its a shame Tony would have been in his 17th year with the Riots but he was handed his walking papers by the administration who felt it was time for a change. Coach Dibiases assistant for the past 12 years Phil Conley takes over as the head coach. Coach Conley is very capable and he does have some talent returning. They do lose big man Coleman Findley and his brother Matt, plus Eddie Bogdanovich transferred to Portland. The Riots return one of the states top Sophomores Keegan Hyland and he will get help from Seniors Will Furbush, Nick Wright, Nick Gaddar and Chris Biskup, plus another talented Sophomore Matt Lee. The Riots should be right in the thick of things come tourney time.

Next is the Blue Blazes from Westbrook. The Blases have had a couple of down years but they will be strong this year. Coach Karter has some talent this season and if the players buy into his system the Blazes will be contenders this year. Gone are Travis Rand, Michael Tanguay and Shane Kelly. They return Kyle Sanborn, Josh Harriman, Kyle Barrows and Steve LeBel, plus Juniors Tyler Kelly and Christian Hamilton. One of the states top Sophomores Dominic Borelli and another very talented Soph Nich Jobin.
Look for the Blazes to be tough an upset-minded come tourney time.

Up next the Golden Trojans from Thornton. The Trojans lose Tyler Kelly, Mike Burchill and Elliot Thomas. But back are Jeff Winnie and big man Kory Martin along with a top Junior James Morse and add in role players John Trull, Dakota Greene and Kyle Powers ant the Trojans under Coach Bob Davies will make a strong run this season.

Also watch out for Windham and Scarborough this year as they could surprise.

WIZ Predictions:

Class A East Champs- Bangor
Class A West Champs- Cheverus
Class A State Champions- Bangor

Class B East:

Have to stick with Camden Hills to repeat in the East. It will be tough but I think Coach Hart can do it with the team he has. The Windjammers lost in the State game to Mountain Valley last season 58-48 and you know they would love another shot at the Gold Ball this year. They do lose two starters from last year to graduation Nick Wooton and Jared Mitchell plus Paul Drapper is gone, but plenty of talent is back. This years seniors Paul Campbell, Christian Pieri Dylan Smith, Jake Grinnell and A.J. Hunt are all back along with one of the states top Juniors Gordan Fischer plus a very good cast of other Juniors plus a very good Sophomore in Jimmy Weffering. I look for the Windjammers to be right back fighting for the Gold this year.

Next the Black Bears of Maranacook. The Black Bears last years favorites by many were stunned in the quarter-finals by MCI 58-50. The great Sophomore class of two years ago are back as Seniors this year and you know they have something they want to prove. They want that Gold back that they got 2 years ago. They have one of the state top players in Ryan Martin (Hell Light-Up-The Christmas Trees long before Xmas is here)
Plus Will Bardaglio, Mike Poulin and Devin Garrity. Wow! What a line-up! They can taste it and they just might get it back.

Up next the Gardiner Tigers. The Tigers lose big man Sean McNally (UMaine) and Devon Brown to graduation. Everyone else is back and Gardiner drops from Class A to Class B this year and they will be very tough to beat in Class B. Kyle Stilphen is one of the states top athletes. The three-sport player is also one of the best in his class at basketball. He will lead the Tigers along with Mike Lavalle, Alex Nivus, Mike Denham, Ryan Guerrette, Jacob Coan, Eric Goodwin, Jake Wright and Jordan Grant. I see the Tigers right in the Mix come tourney time.

Sleeper Teams:

Mattanawcook The Lynx made it to the Eastern Finals last year losing a heartbreaker to Camden 61-60. You know they would love to go further this year. Senior Derek Dead Eye Libby had a great summer playing with the MBR team. This kid can shoot the lights out. He will get help from Junior Brady Vose along with a good cast of supporting players. Look for the Lynx to be right in the mix come tourney time.

Next up I like Erskine this year. The Eagles went 8-10 in regular season last year and lost by 2pts. in the prelims to Gardiner 40-38, but that was in Class A. Erskine also makes the drop to Class B this year and they will be tough at this level. Back this year will be Senior Jack Garrity along with his twin brother Peter. Look for both to have a big year. Then add in Junior Garret Holt and Devon Veileux and the Eagles will be right in the thick of things come time for the Tourney.

Up Next the Hawks of Hermon. The Hawks went 11-7 in regular season last year. Then they win a thriller by 2pts. 52-50 over Medomak in the Prelim game. Then they lose a heartbreaker a 3 overtime loss to Ellsworth in the quarter-finals. The Hawks will be hungry this season. The Senior Derek Helms returns along with Junior Kevin Tarr and Super Sensation the Super Soph Colton Gross. The Hawks will surprise this year and they very well could go deep into the tournament.

Class B West:

In B West I like the Capers of Cape Elizabeth. Coach Jim Ray gets the best out of his players and this year his team has plenty of talent. The Capers only lose two to graduation. Nick Goodyknoonz and Will Hall are gone. Cape went 10-8 in the regular season last year, won their quarter-final game over Poland 79-56, beat York in the quarters 61-50 before losing to Mountain Valley in the Semis 62-33. The Capers have a ton of talent coming back. They will be led by one of the states top players in Class B Senior Shaine Burks, plus Senior point guard Tommy Ray, along with big man Ian Place and plenty of more help with, Tony Welch, Steve Whitten, Woodlin Tabery and Jimmy Bump. Plus Juniors Conor Lawler, John Messina and Alex Bowe. Plus a Super Soph Andrew Dickey. Cape will be very strong with plenty of depth. I Look for Cape to take the West this Year.

Up next is the Falcons of Mountain Valley. Last years defending State Champions lose a lot to Graduation. Andy Shorey, D J Gerrish, Matt Lyons plus the Cookie Man Brendan Keckel are gone. (They will miss them cookies!). They do have some experience returning in Owen Jones, Dean McCrillis, Bryan Canwell and Keith Brennick for the Seniors. Plus Juniors Justin Staires, Matt Laubauskas, Jacob Hickey and Travis Ruff. Who knows the Falcons with their winning traditions could steal the whole show and possibly bring the Gold back to Rumford for Back-To-Back Titles.

Next up would be the Greely Rangers. The Rangers finished last season at 17-1 and headed to the tournament as the #1 seed. Beat Yarmouth in the quarter-finals 67-43. beat Falmouth in the Semis 63-40 and they lost to Mountain Valley in the Western Maine Final 39-32. Coach Ken Marks loses Big Guns Caleb Jordan, Matt McDonough and Will Grogan to graduation. They have some young talent coming back. Junior Chris Young will have a breakout year this season and he will get help from Seniors Spencer Adams and Alex Lavoie plus Juniors Erik Thayer and Ben Andreasen. Plus a very good Sophomore in Trevor Tierney. Look for the Rangers to be in the fight come tourney time.

Sleeper Teams:

The Falmouth Yachtsmen. Coach Halligan somehow gets his teams there every year. They lose 5 Seniors from last year. Brady Frost, Adam Pachard, Jesse Hugo, Sam Barns and Alex Westervelt are gone. But Coach Halligan returns some young talent. Theyll be led by Seniors Mike Doyle and Kevin Smith and will get help from Junior Jack Wyman and a Super Soph Stephano Mancini. The Yachtsmen will be right back in the tournament.

Next up the Yarmouth Clippers. The Clippers went 11-7 in regular season last year and they beat Lake Region in the prelim game 75-47 and they lost in the quarter-final to Greely 67-43. The Clippers lose little to graduation. Bryan Ertz is gone but back are Lucas Denning and Joey Dillworth. These two plus a good cast of role players the Clippers will be back in the Tourney as well.

Up next the Falcons of Freeport. These Falcons also finished at 11-7 in regular season games last year and they lost in the quarter-final game to Mountain Valley 74-46. They lose two top players Danny Mehler and Luke Charest to graduation. Senior Reid Christian is back with Tom Markelon plus a very good Junior in John Klages plus a good cast of role players and Coach Sickels should have his team back in the tournament again this year.

WIZ Predictions:

Class B East Champs- Camden
Class B West Champs- Cape Elizabeth
Class B state Champions- Camden

Class C East:

The Calais Blue Devils will look to make it 3 in a row. The two time defending State Champions do lose Brandon Tomah and Chris Taylor to graduation but look what they have returning. Senior point guard Sam Bell will lead the way but he will get plenty of help from Juniors Cal Shorey and Jordan Leeman plus Rod Tirrell and add in the younger Shorey Freshmen Cam. That line-up will be very hard to beat. The Blue Devils are undefeated the last two years. Can they do it again?

Up next the Raiders of Washington Academy. The Raiders went 12-5 in regular season last year then beat Ft. Kent in the quarters 74-65 before losing to PCHS 57-52 in the Semis. The Raiders return Senior Joey Hunter along with Eric Leighton and they have a Super Soph in Ben Teer. The other Soph Josh Johnson I understand has moved out of state. But still expect a big year for the Raiders.

Next up is the Orono Red Riots. The Riots went 11-7 in regular season last year and lost a close one to Houlton in the Semi-Finals 59-56. With Senior Seth Dwyer back along with Joel Riemersma look for the Red Riots to be right back in the thick of things come tourney time.

Sleeper teams:

The Dexter Tigers will be very hungry this year. After going 12-6 last year they beat Narraguagus in the prelim 57-37 but lost to Piscataquis in the Quarter-Finals 54-33. The Tigers return Gavin Cote and Nate Pierce and the Tigers will be in the hunt again when the tournament rolls around.

Up next are the Pandas from Lee Academy. The Pandas make the move up to Class C from Class D. In Class D last year the Pandas went 11-7 in regular season play, then they beat Shead in the Prelim 74-51, beat Limestone in the Quarter-Finals 67-49, Then lost a heartbreaker to Schenck in the Semi-Final 50-49. The Pandas will be led by Senior Devon Parker and I hear they got a real good freshmen A J Harris and who knows who else may be playing for the Pandas. Look for Lee to have another good year.

Next up the Shiretowners from Houlton. The Shiretowners went 11-7 last year in regular season play. They beat Orono in the Quarters 59-56 and lost to Calais in the Semis 54-45. The Shiretowners return 3 big Seniors Parker Brown, Ryan Hill and Josh Beals. Add in Junior James Bates and the Shiretowners will be very good again this season. They might even surprise everybody and come out on top in the East.

Class C West:

The Winthrop Ramblers will be very tough to beat this year. They went 16-2 last season. Beat St. Doms in the Quarters 65-47, and lost to Boothbay in the Semis 71-46. They do lose Mike Gingras, Kyle Plossy and Jason Ridley to graduation. But they have the States # 1 player in Sam LeClerc. You think LeClerc was good last wait till you see him this year. What a summer this kid had. Sam has plenty of help too. Junior Larry Foster is back as is Erza Damm and Tim Gingras and add in Kevin Hart, Jake Steele and Skyler Whaley. Plus they get a transfer from Mt. Blue Junior Zach Farrington who will help out. Look for the Ramblers to come out on top in the West.

Up next the Cougars of Dirigo. The Cougars are coached by one of the best coaches in the state Gavin Kane. Last year the Cougars went 17-1 in regular season play and went into the tournament the # 1 seed. They beat Livermore Falls in the Quarter-Final 77-38, took care of Traip in the Semi-Final 67-54 and lost to Boothbay in the Western Maine Final 52-45. They lose three key players to graduation. Mike Holmquist, Spencer Berry and Josh Daley are gone. But back are the States # 1 Junior 67 Thomas Knight. This guy will be a force inside this year and he can step back and nail the 3 pointer. He will get help from Seniors Colby Knapp, Adam Law and Erik Kersey, Plus they have a couple of Super Sophs in Nick Crutchfield and Tyler Chaisson. The Cougars will be well coached and will be right at the top of their game come tourney time and they very well could steal the whole show.

Next up the Boothbay Seahawks. The Seahawks lose a ton to graduation. 8 Seniors are gone including Big Guns Owen Johnson, Roy Arsenault, Matt Sceviour and Pat Norton. But they return Big Man Kris Noonan. Kris at 65 is one of the states best big men. He had an outstanding summer playing with the MBR team and he will be a force in Class C east this year. He will get help from Seniors Tim Stover and Joe Farrin plus a good Junior in Sam Cook. The Seahawks coached by the legend I.J. Pinkham will be right in the middle of things come tourney time and the will look to steal the whole show.

Sleeper Teams:

The North Yarmouth Academy Panthers will make some noise this year. The Panthers finished last season with a record 7-11 and went into the tourney as the # 11 seed. They squeaked by Georges Valley in the prelim 44-42 and they lost to Boothbay in the Quarters 58-36. They lose two starters to graduation. Banak Thiwat and Choul Ngoal are gone. But Coach Ed Rogers has some talent coming back. Senior Liam Anderson should have a breakout year and fellow Senior Pak Lul is back along with two very good Juniors in Andrew Gendron and Calvin Chicoine. I see the Panthers making a very strong run this year.

Up Next would be the Waynflete Flyers. The Flyers went 13-5 under Coach Rich Henry last season. They beat Mt. Abram in the Prelim 72-22 and lost to Traip in the Quarters 60-49. They do lose 3 starters to graduation. Kahiye Hassen, Thomas Newton and Andrew Veroneau are gone. Coming back though are Seniors Lucas ONeil and Jared Entwistle along with Junior Hassen Jeylani and a very good Sophomre Billy NGoal. Lucas ONeil is an excellent point guard look for him to lead this group to a very good season this year.

Next up the Traip Rangers. The Rangers finished last season at 12-6. They beat Hall-Dale in the Prelim 71-51, beat Waynflete in the Quarters 60-49 before losing to Dirigo in the Semis 67-54. The Rangers lose 4 starters to graduation. Isaiah Plummer, Andrew Plummers, Ryan Birse and Matt Downs are gone. Back is the lone starter Senior Trevor Higgins. Trevor had a super season last year and he will be one of the best players in C West this year. He will get help from fellow Seniors Cody Abbott and Tyler Metevier, plus two Juniors that will help in the cause Brennen Connor and Eric Modica. Look for Coach Jeremy Paul to have this group playing very well this season.

WIZ Predictions:

Class C East Champs- Calais
Class C West Champs- Winthrop
Class C State Champions- Winthrop

Class D East:

Have to go with Deer Isle to repeat in the East this year. Sure they lose Bryant Ciomei but the got his brother back Senior Colin Ciomei and Junior Eben Powers also returns. They will get help from Drew Eaton and Evan Rollings. The Mariners went a perfect 22-0 last season taking home the Gold Ball. Things wont be as easy this season but with Ciomei and Powers leading the way I think the Mariners can take the East again.

Up next is the Central Aroostook Panthers. The Panthers went 18-0 in regular season games last year. They beat Machias in the Prelim 78-42, beat Calvary in the Quarters 64-58 and lost to DIS in the Semis 76-63. The Panthers return standouts Manny Martinez and Cameron York. These two should have a huge season this year and they will get help from Sophomore Casey Brewer, plus add in Blake and Logan McCarthy and a couple of rookie Freshman Caleb Kelly and Logan McLaughlin. The Panthers will be strong again and they could very well take the whole thing.

Next up the Woodland Dragons. The Dragons went 11-7 in regular season last year and headed to the tournament as the # 9 seed. The Dragons lost a heartbreaker in overtime in the Prelim game to Washburn 59-55. Dragons Coach Troy Cilley has a ton of talent this year. Ben Sears and Chad James will lead the way for the Dragons along with help from Aaron St.Pierre, Spencer Brown and the Sophomore Corey Rolfe, plus add in the other Sophomore Keith Curtis. The Dragons will make a strong run come tourney time.

Sleeper Teams:

The Fort Fairfield Tigers will be pretty tough this season. The Tigers went 5-13 last season and just missed making the 16 Class D East Tournament getting beat out by South Aroostook. But the Tigers have a lot of experience returning this year. Look for Junior Doug Sharpe to have a big year and hell have help from fellow Juniors Austin Dufour and Matt Cresenzo, plus Seniors Ryan Noyes and Cody Closson and the Sophomore Josh Booth should have a very good year. Look for the Tigers to be in the hunt come tourney time.

Next up the Easton Bears. The Bears finished 11-7 in regular season play last year and were seeded at # 11 but lost in the Prelim to # 6 Calvary 89-64. Senior Jeremy Brock returns for the Bears along with fellow Senior Nate Sanders and they will get help from 3 Juniors Brad Trask, Sam Bacon and Sean Daniels. I think the Bears will have a good year and go a little deeper in this years tournament.

Up Next the South Aroostook Warriors. The Warriors went 4-14 in regular season last year and the squeak in the final 16 for the East tourney but the were beaten in the prelim game by # 1 seed Schenck 85-44. Colby Clark is back for his final year along with Rob Toothaker, plus Junior Tyler Robinson and they also have one of those Super Soph Dakota Sleeper. Dakota is the brother of the former Legend of the County Wille Sleeper. Plus they have a very good Freshman in Cody Robinson. Look for the Warriors to be much improved this year.

Class D West:

The Richmond Bobcats went a perfect 17-0 in regular season play last year. They entered the Tournament as the # 1 seed. The Bobcats beat Rangeley in the quarter-finals 61-44, beat a good Buckfield team in the semis 52-48 and they lost to Gould in the Western Maine Final 50-42. They lose Glendon Kendrick, Kyle Lancaster and Erik Nash from their starting line-up due to graduation but the Big Guy 611 Marc Zaharchukis back along with Brandon Lancaster and Sam Carter, plus they will get help from Walter Miller, Josh Brown, Nick Woods and Eric Murrin. I dont see anyone beating this team this season. Coach Paul Lancaster has to be excited I dont see anyone in Class D that will be able to stop Zaharchuk. Look for the Bobcats to take the Gold Ball home this year.

Next up would be the Valley Crusaders and they will be out to prove me wrong. The Crusaders finished up with an 11-6 record in regular season last year. The Crusaders beat Hyde in the quarter-final 53-50 and they lost to Gould in the Semis 52-44. They lose Stefan Staples and Lucas Hinds to graduation; But the Legendary coach Dwight Littlefield has some talent this year. Back for their Senior year are Trevor Miller, Curtis Miller, Scott Hunnewell and Brandon Osgood and they will get help from Jonathan Hunnewell, Ronald Pinkham along with two sophomore Cameron Miller and Nathan Schultz. Look for Valley to have a very good year and try to upset Richmond in the tournament.

Up next the Buckfield Bucks. The Bucks finished at 9-7 heading into last years tournament. They beat Elan in the quarter-final 62-33 and lost to Richmond in the Semis 52-48. They lose their top scorer Jamie Henderson to graduation but thats it everyone else is back. John Condon, Zach Cowett, Cy Wilkinson and Andrew Litchfield are all back for their senior season. These guys will be tough to be and they just might surprise us all.

Sleeper Teams:

The Rangeley Lakers finished 8-10 in regular season last year and they beat Portland Christian in the prelim game 74-48 before losing to Richmond in the quarter-final 61-44. The Lakers will be led by David Raymond and Ben Bliss. Look for the Rangers to be in the mix come tourney time.

Next up the Buccaneers of Elan. The Buccaneers finished their regular season at just 9-3 last year and they lost to Buckfield in the quarter-final 62-33. They only lose two players to graduation and they have a very good group of players back this year. They will be led by Junior Malcolm Turner and he will get help Sean Waddleton and Fred Hussain. Look for the Buccaneers to be very hungry come tournament time.

Up Next I like Greater Portland Christian. The Lions finished 7-8 in regular season play last year and got bumped by Rangeley in the prelim game 74-48. They have their 3 captains back for their final year. Derek Green, Matt Congdon and Mike Saunders and they have more seniors that will help the cause in Jacob Thibeault, Tyler Yarborough, Nate Harriman and Joe Tshamala. The Lions have some experience and they should be right in the hunt come tourney time.

WIZ Predictions:

Class D East Champs- Deer Isle
Class D West Champs- Richmond
Class D State Champions- Richmond

WIZ Preseason Player Rankings:

The WIZ Preseason Player Rankings are base on play from last year, play from AAU, play from summer H.S. hoops and play from fall leagues. I have a list of the Top 25 Players State Wide, A Top 100 Seniors list, A top 75 Juniors list, A top 40 Sophpmore list and a Top 25 Un-Ranked Freshmen list. We must remember this is a preseason list and many players will change in rankings as the season progresses as many players improve throughout the year and as always new stars arise. At the end of the season The WIZ puts out his End Of season Player Rankings which are a much truer ranking. Also when compelling a ranking list like this there is always the possibility that a player may be missed or there may be UNs players we do not know about. If there are players you feel are missed please let us know.

WIZ TOP 25 Players State Wide:

1.Sam LeClerc-----------Sr.-----------Winthrop
2.Jon McAllian----------Sr.-----------Bangor
3.Thomas Knight---------Jr.-----------Dirigo
4.Derek Libbey----------Sr.-----------Mattanawcook
5.Ryan Martin-----------Sr.-----------Maranacook
6.Lee Suvlu-------------Sr.-----------Bangor
7.Sean Bergeron---------Sr.-----------Kennebunk
8.Ryan Weston-----------Sr.-----------Bangor
9.Kyle Donovan----------Sr.-----------Deering
10.Mick DiStasio--------Jr.-----------Cheverus
11.Keegan Hyland--------So.-----------South Portland
12.Mike Harmon----------Sr.-----------Portland
13.Orlando Holmes-------Sr.-----------Messalonskee
14.Kyle Philbrook-------Sr.-----------Edward Little
15.Mike Foustoukos------Sr.-----------Gorham
16.Andrew Pullen--------Sr.-----------Cony
17.Kris Noonan----------Sr.-----------Boothbay
18.Shaine Burks---------Sr.-----------Cape Elizabeth
19.Justin Powell--------Sr.-----------Portland
20.Dominic Borrelli-----So.-----------Westbrook
21.Marc Zaharchuk-------Sr.-----------Richmond
22.Ethan Cushman--------Sr.-----------John Bapst
23.Gordan Fischer-------Jr.-----------Camden Hills
24.James Morse----------Jr.-----------Thornton
25.Jacob Moore----------So.-----------Hampden

WIZ Top 100 Seniors (Class of 2008)

1.Sam LeClerc----------Winthrop
2.Jon McAllian---------Bangor
3.Derek Libbey---------Mattanawcook
4.Ryan Martin----------Maranacook
5.Lee Suvlu------------Bangor
6.Sean Bergeron--------Kennebunk
7.Ryan Weston----------Bangor
8.Kyle Donovan---------Deering
9.Mike Harmon----------Portland
10.Orlando Holmes------Messalonskee
11.Kyle Philbrook------Edward Little
12.Mike Foustoukos-----Gorham
13.Andrew Pullen-------Cony
14.Kris Noonan---------Boothbay
15.Shaine Burks--------Cape Elizabeth
16.Justin Powell-------Portland
17.Marc Zaharchuk------Richmond
18.Ethan Cushman-------John Bapst
19.Kyle Stilphen-------Gardiner
20.Mike Poulin---------Maranacook
21.Antonio Juco--------Hampden
22.Eric Prue-----------Edward Little
23.Jake Longstaff------Portland
24.Paul Campbell-------Camden Hills
25.Doug Alston---------Cheverus
26.Sam Bell------------Calais
27.Adam Bernstein------Bangor
28.Jeff Winnie---------Thornton
29.Colin Ciomei--------Deer Isle
30.Will Bardaglio------Maranacook
31.Eric Thistle--------Skowhegan
32.Adam Kingsbury------Presque Isle
33.Shawn Dottsie-------Mt.Ararat
34.Brad Haase----------Hampden
35.Bill Zolpher--------Bangor
36.Kyle Corrigan-------Caribou
37.Christian Pieri-----Camden Hills
38.DeWayne Alberte-----Portland
39.Ryan Hill-----------Houlton
40.Tom Ray-------------Cape Elizabeth
41.Nate Peirce---------Dexter
42.Athony Passmore-----Portland
43.Joey Hunter---------Washington Acad.
44.Colby Knapp---------Dirigo
45.Mike Lavalle--------Gardiner
46.Ben Rosser----------Caribou
47.Cameron OBrien-----Cony
48.Chris Hughes--------Scarborough
49.Liam Anderson-------NYA
50.Mike Lowell---------Schenck
51.Will Furbush--------South Portland
52.Lucas ONeil--------Wayneflete
53.Justin Brown--------Hampden
54.Joe Gilbert---------Mt.Blue
55.Travis Gurrette-----Windham
56.Jack Garrity--------Erskine
57.Lucas Denning-------Yarmouth
58.Tim Gingras---------Winthrop
59.Reid Christian------Freeport
60.Gavin Cote----------Dexter
61.Cameron York--------Central Aroostook
62.Andy Pogar----------Scarborough
63.Trevor Higgins------Traip
64.Casy McKauge--------Bonny Eagle
65.Billy Colasante-----St.Doms
66.Kory Martin---------Thornton
67.Josh Dibatisha------Mt.Ararat
68.Kevin Smith---------Falmouth
69.Mamadou Ba----------Old Town
70.Dan Scully----------Brunswick
71.Dylan Smith---------Camden Hills
72.Ben Harnett---------Edward Little
73.Devon Costigan------Lawrence
74.Alex Fraiser--------Cheverus
75.Nick Wright---------South Portland
76.Chris Smith---------Deering
77.Nate Burke----------Hampden
78.Erza Damm-----------Winthrop
79.Owen Jones----------Mountain Valley
80.Brandon Moffett-----Oxford Hills
81.Cy Wilkinson--------Buckfield
82.Rod Tirrell---------Calais
83.Tim Stover----------Boothbay
84.Mike Doyle----------Falmouth
85.Zach Keene----------Livermore Falls
86.Muktar Sharif-------Edward Little
87.Larry Foster---------Winthrop
88.Derek Keller---------Mt.View
89.Curtis Miller--------Valley
90.Joe Dilworth---------Yarmouth
91.Colby Clark----------South Aroostook
92.Ian Place------------Cape Elizabeth
93.Peter Garrity--------Erskine
94.Jeremy Brock---------Easton
95.Dean McGrillis-------Mountain Valley
96.Derek Helms----------Hermon
97.Ben Doucette---------Van Buren
98.Trevor Miller--------Valley
99.Zach Cowatt----------Buckfield
100.Jordan Stinglen-----Seacoast Christian

WIZ Top 75 Juniors (Class of 2009)

1.Thomas Knight---------Dirigo
2.Mick DiStasio---------Cheverus
3.Gordan Fischer--------Camden Hills
4.James Morse-----------Thornton
5.Ronald Abwoch---------Deering
6.Jarrid Palmer---------Lewiston
7.Ben Russell-----------Mt.Blue
8.Cal Shorey------------Calais
9.Peter Foley-----------Cheverus
10.Chris Young----------Greely
11.Tyler Cummings-------Hall-Dale
12.Eddie Bagdonovich----Portland
13.Jason Dennison-------Wiscasset
14.Chad James-----------Woodland
15.Jordan Leeman--------Calais
16.Jamie Sawyer---------Mt.Blue
17.Ian Barwise----------Cheverus
18.Nick Baudansa--------Rockland
19.Corey Therriault-----Edward Little
20.Colby Hutchins-------Brewer
21.Russ Mortland--------Presque Isle
22.John Klages----------Freeport
23.Phil Leighton--------Lake Region
24.Dan Foster-----------Cheverus
25.Christian Hamilton---Westbrook
26.Justin Staires-------Mountain Valley
27.Eric Goodwin---------Gardiner
28.Garrett Holt---------Erskine
29.Dan Sheehan----------York
30.Parker Dodd----------Deering
31.James Bates----------Houlton
32.Jack Wyman-----------Falmouth
33.Brett Bradford-------Bangor Christian
34.Lincoln Dresser------Rockland
35.Alex Kee-------------Morse
36.Greg ONeil----------Cony
37.Kevin Hart-----------Winthrop
38.Nate Dixon-----------Windham
39.Kevin Tarr-----------Hermon
40.Alex Bowe------------Cape Elizabeth
41.Nate Doehler---------Bonny Eagle
42.Brad Trask-----------Easton
43.Andrew Gendron-------NYA
44.Devon Garrity--------Maranacook
45.Malcome Turner-------Elan
46.Ebon Powers----------Deer Isle
47.Matt Perkins---------Lawrence
48.Dylan Dedmon---------Bucksport
49.Manny Marttinez------Central Aroostook
50.Tim Fraser-----------Brunswick
51.Brian Carville-------Cony
52.Regan Flaherty-------Deering
53.Connor Lawler--------Cape Elizabeth
54.Ben Sears------------Woodland
55.Doug Sharpe----------Ft.Fairfield
56.Brady Vose-----------Mattanawcook
57.Alex Nivus-----------Gardiner
58.Tyler Patterson------Rockland
59.David Ketchan--------Winthrop
60.Matt Laubouskas------Mountain Valley
61.Doug Nash------------Leavitt
62.Alex Goldrup---------Medomak
63.Ben Andreason--------Greely
64.Khader Abbas---------Deering
65.Isaac Brower---------Hyde
66.Nate Frazier---------Bangor
67.Ian Philbrook--------Scarborough
68.Teel Iverson---------Rockland
69.Danny Hart-----------Camden Hills
70.Ryan MacQueston------Windham
71.Cameron Newman-------Biddeford
72.Eric Thayer--------- Greely
73.Charlie Ho-----------Portland
74.Evan McCarthy--------Katahdin
75.Eddie Manning--------Scarborough

WIZ Top 40 Sophomores (Class of 2010)

1.Keegan Hyland---------South Portland
2.Dominic Borrelli------Westbrook
3.Jacob Moore-----------Hampden
4.Kong Thok-------------Portland
5.Indiana Faithfull-----Cheverus
6.Eddie Tirabassi-------Deering
7.Stephano Mancini------Falmouth
8.Colton Gross----------Hermon
9.Walter Stover---------Portland
10.Lenny Cummings-------Cheverus
11.Nich Jobin-----------Westbrook
12.Noah Burdit----------Hampden
13.Evan Kenny-----------GNG
14.Ben Teer-------------Washington Acad.
15.Paul Verville--------Skowhegan
16.Andrew Dickey--------Cape Elizabeth
17.Jason Burns----------Cony
18.Trevor Tierney-------Greely
19.Joe Zukowski---------Portland
20.Nate Hennigan--------Bangor
21.Dylan Kingsbury------Presque Isle
22.Nate Carson----------Brewer
23.Dakota Sleeper-------South Aroostook
24.Jordan Taylor--------Skowhegan
25.Luke Bartlett--------Old Town
26.Jordan Hoyt----------Mt.Blue
27.Rachon Edgerton------Brunswick
28.Tyler Pelletier------Mt.Ararat
29.Ray Leach------------Hall-Dale
30.Tyler Chaisson-------Dirigo
31.Josh Sangillo--------Windham
32.Jimmy Weffering------Camden Hills
33.Cal Winchester-------Bangor
34.Jim Philbrook--------Edward Little
35.Miles Carey-Snow-----Portland
36.Tim Levesque---------Oak Hill
37.Austin Clark---------Jay
38.Matt Lee-------------South Portland
39.Tyler Bessette-------Brewer
40.Ryan Petros----------Ellsworth

WIZ Top 25 Upcoming Freshmen (Class of 2011)
(Un-Ranked and in no particular order)

Dennis Ross----------Deering
Nate Thistle---------Skowhegan
James Ek-------------Portland
Joe Doane------------Cape Elizabeth
Josh Walker----------Mt. Ararat
Graham Safford-------Camden
Brad Reed------------Belfast
Cam Shorey-----------Calais
Zach Gardiner--------Westbrook
Joe Savino-----------Cheverus
Zach Blodget---------Bangor
Ryan Ecker-----------Rockland
Clint Orcutt---------Mt.Blue
Tyler McFarland------Camden
Zach Bean------------Scarborough
Andrew Shaw----------Thornton
Mekae Hyde-----------Lewiston
Jamie Ross-----------Deering
Cameron Brown--------Cape Elizabeth
Keegan Pieri---------Camden
Josiah Hartley-------Bangor
Ray Bessette---------Brewer
John Hardy-----------Deering
Joseph Veroneau------Waynflete
Cameron Kaubris------Mountain Valley

WIZ Preseason Top 10 Teams heading into Week # 1

1.Bangor-----Last year Class A State Champions! The Rams want to Repeat Baby! McAllian! The Alaskan Assassin Suvlu! Weston! Bernstein! Zolpher! Who will stop these guys! Can they Go-All-The-Way!

2.Cheverus----The Stags are lookn Good! Gotta have the Faith! They got Indiana Faithfull! Mick Distasio! Peter Foley! Ian Barwise! Doug Alston! Danny Foster! And they got Coach! Bobby Brown!

3.Portland-----Who Let The Dogs Out! Last years WM Champions! 3 Transfers come in To help The Dogs! Harmon! Stover! Bagdonovich! Combine with Powell! Longstaff! Passomre! Alberte! Thok! And Manny More! Russo has to be

4.Hampden-----The Broncos are Loaded! Juco! Brown! Haase! TwoSuper Sophs! Moore! Burditt! # 2 in the East! Theyll Look to Upset # 1!

5.Deering-----The Rams want to Steal The Whole Show! They just Might! Donovan! Abwoch! Smith! Conley! Dodd! Plus Many More! The Rams are Gonna Be Hungry!

6.Camden Hills-They can taste it! Theyve been there before! One thing Stands in their Way! Maranacook! This will Be An-All-Out-War! Who will Get It! Campbell! Pieri! And! Fischer! Think Windjammers!

7.Edward Little-The Eddies Have something to say! Quick Exit Last Year! They Want More! They may Get It! Philbrook! Prue! Harnett! Shirif! How far will They Go!

8.Maranacook---Forget Last Year! The Black Bears are on a Mission! They want Gold! Period! Nothing else Matters! Martin! Bardaglio! Poulin! And Garrity! They had Gold before! They want it Back!

9.Winthrop-----Whats all the Rambling! The Ramblers will be Hot! They can Smell It! They can Taste It! Will they Get It! LeClerc! Foster! Damm! Gingras! Hart! I think They Will!

10.Calais------Blue Devils Look for a 3-Peat! Would be Sweet! Havent Lost in 2 Years! Wow! Will The Streak End! The Gold Rush is on Baby! Who will get It! Bell! Shorey! Leeman! Tirrell! How Sweet It Is!

Teams Knocking On The Door:

Cape Elizabeth
South Portland
Mountain Valley
Deer Isle

Til Next week: The itch has started again! Good luck to all teams!