By Tom Nader
Publisher and Editor
165-106 career record
Coaching Staff: Phil Starks, varsity assistant; Bruce Thomas, varsity assistant; Rocky Orr, junior varsity; Tyler Shank, freshmen; Stephen Laird, varsity assistant; Jeremy Vecchio, varsity assistant; Ron Estes, varsity assistant.
2021-22 Record: 17-7 overall; 13-1 Metro Athletic Conference; MAC league champion.
Returning Lettermen (4): Brevyn Nobles, sr.; Bryan Nobles, sr.; Colby Benjamin, sr.; Micah Schuster, sr.
Lettermen Lost (5): Devin Reese, Bryce Vecchio, Sam Abbuhl, Gabe Gill, Airyman Singh.
The defending Metro Athletic Conference champions are a little bit younger this season, but still have plenty of talent.
Marcini feels his team’s success will rely on “our young guys growing up quick, and if we shoot the ball well from the outside.”
“We want to play fast,” Marcini said. “We should have fairly good guard play, and we are athletic at the forwards, so we want to get out and go.”
The Rockets’ backcourt is led by the senior trio of Brevyn Nobles, Colby Benjamin and Micah Schuster.
Nobles (6-foot-2) is a two-year letterman and was Second Team All-MAC last year. He did a little bit of everything a season ago, averaging 6.3 points, 4.2 rebounds, 3.7 assists and 2.0 steals per game.
“He is at his best when he is getting downhill and being a playmaker,” Marcini said. “He is extremely long and a capable on-ball defender.”
Benjamin (5-10) started most of last season.
“He is extremely tough and hard working,” Marcini said. “He takes pride in guarding the opposing team’s best player.”
Schuster (6-2) was Honorable Mention All-MAC last year and is still mending from an injury.
“He came on very strong at the end of last year. He’s a long and athletic defender that can knock down outside shots,” Marcini said.
A collection of skilled guards, including Joey Hoffman, Jack Batten, Trevor Murray, Charles Ivory and Michael Berry, will all be pushing for backcourt time.
Senior Bryan Nobles spotlights the position and will be counted on to score more inside this season.
Nobles (6-2) is a very good defender that can guard any position.
Marcini notes sophomore Jackson Gula and senior Dakari Reese as “welcome additions” to the frontcourt.
“Our mixture of youth, experience and skill has everyone excited about how this season plays out,” Marcini said.
Charles Ivory, soph.; Jack Batten, soph.; Trevor Murray, soph.
The tough team sets the rules!
“Lack of overall size and our youth,” Marcini said.
“It could be a dogfight this year,” Marcini said. “Norton, Woodridge and Cloverleaf all return First-Teamers. Springfield will have very good guard lay. Ravenna, Field and Coventry are all returning a lot of experience. Hopefully we can hang around. It could get interesting.”