By: Nate Rubinstein (@Nate_Rubinstein)
For the final conference preview of the week we take a look at the CSC conference. See what you can expect out of the following teams in the 2016-2017 season!
2015-2016 result: 18-9 quarterfinal loss in Class M State tournament, finals loss in CSC conference tournament.
Outlook: Abbott Tech made a run in both the conference and state tournaments last season, almost coming out on top for the CSC final, but falling to Harding, 111-91. They lost two stars in Nick Placella and Omari Johnson to graduation, so they will be in search of players who can take over the scoring load. Both Placella and Johnson will be playing their first season of collegiate basketball this year for Southern Vermont College (DIII). A player on Abbott’s roster to keep an eye out for is sophomore guard Nazeer Priar. Although he lacks in size, Priar takes the ball to the rim with authority and isn’t afraid of making contact with a big man, or two.
2015-2016 result: 19-7, quarterfinal loss in Class L state tournament, semi-final loss in CSC conference tournament.
Outlook: Considered the strongest team out of the Bridgeport area, Bassick returns this year with a plethora of talent, starting with 6-foot-4 senior forward Keon Evans. Evans is a big guy who is nothing but aggressive on the glass. To join Evans in the paint is junior center Jordan Gallimore, who stands at 6-foot-8. Gallimore runs the floor real well with his length, but needs to add a bit more post moves to his arsenal. Junior guard Qualon Wilkes and sophomore guard Kevin Crawford will both be impact players as well for Bassick.
Bullard Havens Tech
2015-2016 result: 6-14, did not make post-season play.
Outlook: Without seeing postseason play last year, Bullard Havens Tech will come out hungry to prove themselves in the CSC. They lose their leading scorer in Jacob Morales, but return the 6-foot junior Tyrese Wright, who also happens to be the starting quarterback for Bullard Havens. Wright is an athletic specimen that is a high energy player. It is very rare when you see Wright take a play off.
Capital Prep Magnet
2015-2016 result: 11-10, first round loss in Class S state tournament, did not appear CSC conference tournament.
Outlook: Capital Prep couldn’t get past East Windsor in the first round of the state tournament last year, but the Trail Blazers bring back their leading scorer in senior Roderick Henderson who averaged 10.9 points per game, grabbed 9.6 boards per game. Henderson also dished out around 4.2 assists per contest. The all-around 6-foot-1 guard will look to leave his Capital Prep career on a high note. To join him is junior guard Reylend Wilson and senior Daniel Lebron.
2015-2016 result: 9-12, first round loss in Class L state tournament, did not appear in CSC conference tournament.
Outlook: Cheney Tech squeaked their way into the state tournament last year amounting to nine total wins, but got stomped by East Hartford in the first round. The past three years, Cheney Tech has been able to earn a birth in the Class L state tournament, but was unable to get the job done in the first round. The Beavers return four players from last season’s roster that will be entering their senior campaigns, and will look to make more of a push.
2015-2016 result: 0-20, did not make postseason play.
Outlook: The Eagles were unable to put a checkmark in the W column this year, and have only been able to capture three victories in the past two seasons The last time Ellis Tech made it to the playoffs was during the 2012-2013 season when they finished off their regular season schedule 9-11. With the talent pool growing in the CSC year in and year out, it will only get tougher for this Ellis Tech squad.
2015-2016 result: 7-13, did not make postseason play.
Outlook: The Gladiators lost some size with the graduation of 6-foot-8 center O’Shea McKensie, but Joshua Masterson will return to control the paint his senior year as well as junior forward Francisco Santiago. Santiago will be looked upon to run the Gladiator offense, as he was in 2015-2016. Last year this team was young and inexperienced, but will now have enough veteran pieces to compete in the close matchups.
2015-2016 result: 4-16, did not make postseason play.
Outlook: Nine seniors return to the Grasso Tech boys basketball program this year in search of a chance to earn the magic number, eight wins, to snag a spot in the Class M state tournament. In the last three seasons Grasso Tech has been unable to make the playoffs, however came close in 2014-2015 when they were only one win shy.
2015-2016 result: 20-5, second round loss in the Class L state tournament, CSC tournament champions.
Outlook: The reigning CSC champions are coming back with a roster that has lost a ton of their main talents, including junior guard T.J. Pettaway who earned Class L All-State Second Team honors last year. The Presidents return senior guards Justin Sheffield and Ramir Johnson as well who will be assist in the ball handling responsibilities.
2015-2016 result: 8-12, first round loss in Class M state tournament, did not appear in the CSC tournament.
Outlook: David Brown enters his junior year for Kaynor and will give the Panthers height as he stands at 6-foot-5. With the loss of Domenic Digiovancarlo and Richard Hawk, Kaynor is another CSC team that will be searching for a new face to take over the scoring load.
2015-2016 result: 12-10, first round loss in Class M state tournament, first round loss in CSC conference tournament.
Outlook: Norwich Tech had a bunch of newcomers join the team last year, but now that majority of them have returned, they can be considered an experienced roster. Senior Jared Neal will be the lead guard for Norwich Tech in 2016-2017, while Owen Duff and Malachi Jarmon come back for the senior years as well. Junior guard Tom Simone will also be a key contributor.
2015-2016 record: 8-13, first round loss in the Class M state tournament, did not appear in the CSC conference tournament.
Outlook: The Condors leading scorer Joe O’Toole returns for his senior year, averaging 16.0 points per game, as well as 4.3 assists per game. O’Toole plays on one wing for O’Brien Tech, while Ervin Gee plays on the other. Gee averaged 10.5 points per game last year as a junior. Nate Shulick will act as the main big man for the Condors this year. Shulick averaged 10.1 rebounds per game along with netting 8.7 points per game last year.
2015-2016 record: 10-12, first round loss in Class S state tournament, first round loss in CSC conference tournament.
Outlook: Although they were able to make their way into both the conference and state tournaments, Parish Hill was bounced early from both. In the state tournament the Pirates fell 71-45 to Classical Magnet and then 66-42 in the CSC tournament against University. This year Parish Hill will look to have a successful regular season again, and move past the first round of postseason play.
2015-2016 record: 6-14, did not make postseason play.
Outlook: For a team that didn’t have one senior listed on their roster last year, Platt Tech came two games close to earning a berth in the state tournament. Now that everyone is returning, the Panthers know what it will take to reach the eight win mark.
2015-2016 record: 14-8, first round loss in Class M state tournament, first round loss in CSC conference tournament.
Outlook: Both of the playoff games that Prince Tech played in last year were heart breakers falling by three or less in each contest. Arguably one of the top underclassmen in that state, Delshawn Jackson Jr., will come back to rep the purple and yellow and lead the Falcons back to the playoffs. Jackson was honored with a Class M All-State Second Team selection after dropping 24 points per game, passing out four assists per game and six rebounds per game. It is safe to say that Prince Tech will depend a lot on Jackson on the offensive end.
2015-2016 record: 11-10, first round loss in Class S state tournament, did not appear in CSC conference tournament.
Outlook: The Putnam Clippers were led by Daniel Porcic last year, but now that he has transferred to Putnam Science Academy, they will turn to others for scoring. Senior guard Zachary Cutler will be a key player for the Clippers after being more of a role player last season.
2015-2016 record: 15-9, second round loss in Class S state tournament, semi-final loss in CSC conference tournament.
Outlook: University is traditionally one of the powerhouses in the CSC conference, and always find a way into the postseason. Their leading scorer from last season, Melvin Floyd, returns for his junior year after averaging 13.4 points per game. Floyd is a 6-foot-4 forward/center that is the primary big man for the Hawks. Besides Floyd, the rest of the returners were used as role players in the past. Look for University to have a couple new faces show up in the box scores on Tuesday and Friday nights.
2015-2016 record: 10-11, first round loss in Class L state tournament, did not appear in CSC conference tournament.
Outlook: Although Vinal Tech lost a scoring machine in Juwan Bennett, the Hawks bring back senior guard Denzell Woodlard. The 5-foot-8 guard not only was a scoring threat putting in 14.8 points per game, but also was the team’s leading assister with 6.8 per contest. Woodlard will be the nucleus of the Vinal Tech offense this year. Juniors Deoraj Singh and Elias Rhett will also be key contributors for the Hawks.
2015-2016 record: 4-16, did not make postseason play.
Outlook: The Owls graduated six players from the program following the 2015-2016 season, and will have three for this season. Seniors Jarvis Jones and Brandon Quinones will be the primary leaders for the Owls. Jones, a 5-foot-5 point guard who averaged around 10 points per game as a junior and Quinones is more of a combo guard who scored eight points per game last year.
2015-2016 record: 7-13, did not make postseason play.
Outlook: The Mighty Tigers have their entire roster coming back for the 2016-2017 season after not graduating any seniors last year. Windham Tech will continue to struggle on the boards with their lack of height, with their tallest player standing at 6-foot. To get more wins, the Mighty Tigers will need to depend on their speed and getting out on the fast-break.
2015-2016 record: 1-19, did not make postseason play.
Outlook: This Wolcott Tech team is another roster that returns more players than what they have lost from last season. The Wildcats are a struggling program that has only won a single game in the past two seasons. Their one win 2015-2016 came toward the end of January and was against Academy of Science of Innovation.