An unintended oversight on players to watch in the boys basketball preview was Phelps School's superlative Terry Larrier, who is ranked in the top-40 scholastic players by ESPN. Larrier has a big time game and he led Phelps to two big wins to start the season.
Larrier scored 20 points in Phelps opening win over the Hun School and came back Saturday to total 26 more points in an impressive two-point win over Haverford School. Larrier just adds to the quantity of major college talent this year in Chester County.
To me the most impressive performance of the weekend was Conestoga's two wins in the Upper Dublin Tournament. The Pioneers defeated a very good Germantown Academy team in the opening round, going overtime to do it. Then, Conestoga blew out the host Cardinals in the final on Saturday to go to 2-0. ' Stoga jumps right into Central League action this week with home games against Radnor, Ridley and Penncrest. The Pioneers have a lot of people, one of which is Andrew Diehl, who can hurt you behind senior Zach Yonda, and sophomore point guard Daryl Caldwell is an emerging star.
Malvern Prep was one basket away from being 3-0 on the season and new coach John Harmutak looks like he has the Friars back on track as a quality team after an oddly bad season last year for the Friars.
Downingtown East and 6-foot-7, sophomore center, Cary Angeline won both its games in the Downingtown West Tip-Off Tournament last weekend. Angeline got plenty of help from Marquan Gallimore, Ryley Angeline and point guard Kyle Tucker.
Under second-year coach John Goodman, it may be the year that the Cougars really make their presence felt in the Ches-Mont League.
Two teams that I thought would go 2-0 on the weekend were Church Farm and Downingtown West. Both the Griffins and Whippets rolled to easy victories on opening night only to lose on Saturday. Church Farm lost by one point to a good Souderton team, while somehow the Whippets were beaten by Ben Franklin and their superlative point guard, Will Taylor.
After blowing out a bad John Bartram team on Friday night, Coatesville looked very good for one half against Chester. But, in the end, like usually happens, the Clippers' depth wins out. Big week for Coatesville with a nonleague game against Reading and then a Ches-Mont League opener with Downingtown East.
Octorara gets off to a good 2-0 start by winning the Hamburg Tournament, Tarojoe Brake had two big games for coach Gene Lambert's squad and the American Division looks strong top to bottom, more so than the National side does. There appears to be a lot of balance behind Great Valley.
On a football note, I can hear the cries against the private schools already as both the PIAA Class AAA and AAAA champions will come from a private school, either St. Joseph's Prep or Pittsburgh Central Catholic in Class AAAA, or the Vikings of Archbishop Wood or Bishop MxDevitt in Class AAA. We should hear the same cries about basketball come March.
Daily Local News
Boys Basketball Rankings
1. Westtown (1-0): Quakers open home slate Tuesday against Sanford.
2. Conestoga (2-0): Pioneers take Upper Dublin Tournament.
3. Great Valley (2-0): Patriots take their own Tip-Off Tourney.
4. Church Farm (1-1): Griffins lose by one point to Souderton.
5. Coatesville (1-1): Red Raiders cannot hang with Chester.
6. Malvern Prep (2-1): Friars look good under new coach.
7. W.C. Rustin (0-1): Golden Knights bow to Pennsbury.
8. Downingtown East (2-0): Cougars take two easy wins to start season.
9. Octorara (2-0): Braves win Hamburg Tournament.
10. Oxford (1-1): Hornets lose final of Oxford Tournament.