Lewiston High School
Conference: 5A Inland Empire League
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Lewiston High School Team Bio
Head Coach: Jayson Ulrich
Record Last Year: 15-9
State Titles: 1926, 1943, 1948, 2009
Braeden Wilson, 12, G/P
Cody McKenzie, 12, P
Donoven Santana, 11, G
Kyle Van Boeyen, 11, P
Key Players lost from last year:
Keeshawn Clarke, G
Zachary Light, G
Trystan Bradley, P
Colton Richardson, P
Riley Way, G
Photo By: Steve Conner - #20 Braeden Wilson
Written by: Sven Alskog
5A Inland Empire League
PRESEASON COACHES POLL
1. Post Falls
3. Lake City
4. Coeur d’Alene
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Jake Pfennigs, Senior, Post Falls
Tanner McCliment-Call, Senior, Post Falls
Braeden Wilson, Senior, Lewiston
James Carlson, Senior, Lake City
Sam Matheson, Senior, Coeur d’Alene
Post Falls enters the new season as the favorites in the 5A Inland Empire League, returning all five starters and nine players in total from a 19-5 team of a year ago.
Jake Pfennigs, the League MVP a year ago and an All-State performer at the wing position, enters his senior year with as good of a supporting cast around him as any team in Idaho.
Joining Pfennigs will be senior All-IEL selection Tanner McCliment-Call at guard and sophomore backcourt mate Colby Gennett.
“We have great team chemistry and push ourselves daily to improve. We will play fast and under control. We will defend our opponents from baseline to baseline [and] we take pride in our ability to execute our stuff on both ends of the court,” said Post Falls head coach Mike McLean.
In what is a fairly small league, every game is of the utmost importance.
“Every league game [is important]. We are a four team league. Cannot have any missteps,” added McLean.
Lewiston should be a tough battle again this year, although the Bengals did lose Keeshawn Clarke, Trystan Bradley and Zachary Light from a state tournament team last season.
Senior Braeden Wilson will lead the way for the new-look team, and behind a good coaching staff under head coach Jayson Ulrich, the team has the pieces in place to continue to be a tough out.
“Lewiston lost a lot of talent to graduation, however they are the most prepared staff and team we face every year,” said McLean.
Kenny Louie-McGee graduated for Lake City, and the Timberwolves may be hard-pressed to fill the scoring void, although a team approach led by senior James Carlson will look to do just that.
After a 15-8 season last year, Lake City should be in the mix to battle for second or third in the league again this time around.
Coeur d’Alene is another team that will be replacing a talented senior after graduation, with Joey Naccarato no longer around to fill up the stat sheet. The star from a year ago is now playing at UMass Lowell.
“We have great kids who will work hard and I believe we will get the most out of our potential,” said second year Coeur d’Alene head coach Tony Hanna.
Some of those players to watch for the Vikings include All-League returner Sam Matheson at the guard position and fellow seniors Caleb Beggerly and Jack Bloom providing an inside-out combo.
“They key for our success will be defense, rebounding and controlling the boards. We have very athletic players who know how to compete. We also have good team speed,” added Hanna.
With a deep bench and some quality players back, he thinks his team can make some waves in the league.
“I believe we will surprise people. We lost quite a bit of talent last year, but have a good core returning and will have good depth.”