Small schools boys' basketball team-by-team capsules

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Here's a team-by-team look at programs for classes 3A, 2A and 1A.

3A Tri-Peaks

CSCS

Coach: Mark Engesser (sixth season)

Key players: Justin Engesser, sr., G/F; Noah Hopkins, jr., G; Zach Wismer, sr., F; Jared Burbidge, sr., F; Lookens Smith, so., G; Jordan Greager, jr., F

Last season: 22-5 (state champions)

Outlook: CSCS will try to become the eighth team in state history to three-peat. Engesser, who committed to Colorado Christian Univeristy, will look to lead the charge.

Manitou Springs

Coach: Ken Vecchio (31st season)

Key players: Lucas Rodholm, sr., G; Cole Sienknecht, jr., G; Davyn Adamscheck, sr., G; Jared Keul, sr., F

Last season: 23-4 (lost in state quarterfinals)

Outlook: The Mustangs will rely on experience and quickness to counteract a lack of size. Manitou also will work on improving its half-court defense and rebounding.

The Vanguard School

Coach: Joe Wetters (seventh season)

Key players: Seth Fuqua, so., G; Jason Magno, sr., F; Dotson Sykes, sr., C; Tyler Temple-Wheeler, jr., G; Kyle Dhaliwal, jr., G; Kevin Dhaliwal, jr., G

Last season: 13-10

Outlook: Vanguard's strength will come from its backcourt, led by Fuqua and Temple-Wheeler, who should be able to score from multiple spots on the floor. Graduating five seniors from last season will drop the overall experience, according to Wetters, but the younger players have been competitive and will try to get the team over the hump and into the playoffs.

St. Mary's

Coach: Pernell Baca (first season)

Key players: Draven Hackley, jr.; Tyler Englert, jr.; Camden Raedel, junior; Seth Chambliss, jr.; David VanGampleare, sr.

Last season: 14-10

Outlook: The Pirates will rely on team chemistry and balance this season, as St. Mary's fields a youthful team looking to adjust to changes in coaching staff. Baca takes over for hall of fame coach Mark Beranek.

Not reporting: Atlas Preparatory School, James Irwin, Florence

2A Black Forest

Evangelical Christian Academy

Coach: Don Bost (12th season)

Key players: Samuel Perkett, sr., G; Buck Pinson, sr., F; Justin Holt, jr., F

Last season: 14-9

Outlook: The Eagles are undersized, but Bost highlights his team's depth, conditioning and defense as positives his team can rely on.

Fountain Valley

Coach: Dominic Aragon (fifth season)

Key players: Danny Capp, sr., C; Laeone Jung, sr., G; Alex Yu, sr., F; Tenzion Dothar, sr., G

Last season: 2-15

Outlook: The Danes return to 2A action this season, a move Aragon is excited to see. Fountain Valley is also expecting contributions from transfer Jack Knuettel from Littleton and Jackson Blaylock, a freshman from Georgia.

Calhan

Coach: Ryan Carter (fourth season)

Key players: Ben Kelly, jr., G; Charles Sparks, jr., F; Leo Prosser, sr., F; Caleb Fuchs, jr., F

Last season: 6-14

Outlook: Calhan has to improve its communication, according to Carter, to help out the experience and deep bench that the Bulldogs already possess.

Peyton

Coach: Jedd Sims (second season)

Key players: Dominic Gentile, sr., G; Gage Gellerman, sr., G; Seth Anderson, sr., F

Last season: 5-15

Outlook: The Panthers are looking to improve on their team defense to go with strong senior experience and team depth.

Not reporting: Colorado Springs School, Ellicott

2A District 1


Cripple Creek-Victor

Coach: Ben Matthewson (first season)

Key players: Connor Brown, sr., G; David Snare, so., G; Angel St. George Uballe, so., G/F; Koalby Ward, sr., F/C; Evan Morse, sr., C/F

Last season: 5-13

Outlook: Seniors will bring a dose of experience to Cripple Creek-Victor. Matthewson highlighted the athleticism and tenacity of his team. The first-year coach is hoping to lift his team to a league title.


1A District 7

Not reporting: CSDB, Pikes Peak Christian