The Constitution Generals are known far and wide, all across the state of Pennsylvania for their basketball exploits. And rightfully so… with 221 wins since their basketball programs inception, 10 years ago. Let this sink in… 221 wins, 4 PIAA STATE TITLES with 10 straight State Playoff appearances. Not to mention hoisting the Silver ball in the air once and three other trips to the State’s Final 4. The Generals staff insist they are not ready to be referred to as a dynasty just yet, here at PREP SCENE we tend to disagree. In case you missed it that’s…10 years – 221 wins, 7 Final Four Appearances, 4 State Titles and 1 Runner-up.
The architect of the powerhouse constructed on 7th and Chestnut Streets in Center City is head coach Rob Moore. He has orchestrated all this athletic success with many of the city’s best and brightest academically. “The kids understand the big picture… Our goal is to be a model program for the District. We want to show that smart kids can play basketball,” said Moore. ConHigh, which the school is affectionately known as, prides itself as a unique small, city wide school dedicated to empowering students through active citizenship and for producing the next generation of engaged citizens and leaders in government, public policy and law. Can you say STUDENT-athletes!
Moore is an educator and his teachings extend beyond the classroom. His lessons on the hardwood about life and hoops have produced a plethora of productive citizens, college graduates and scholarship level athletes. It is no coincidence that any given year you will notice 3-5 future Division I players taking the floor for him. He is known around the city to develop his kids and maximize their potential. Like every group before them, this year’s group enters the 2019-2020 season with high expectations. Is this the year Constitution wins their 2nd Public League Championship?
The Generals return three starters from last year’s 22-10 outfit that won the District XII AA Championship and was the Philadelphia Public League Runner-up, losing to AAAA State Champion, Imhotep Charter in the final. The undisputed leader of this group will be Keshaun “Champ” Hammonds. The 6’1 Sr. guard is a two-time ALL PUBLIC LEAGUE & ALL STATE player and currently holds five Division I offers. He has amassed 1200 points already and after this season could be mentioned in the same breath with some of the best scorers the city has seen, definitely top 10 numbers are within’ reach, possibly even top 5 in scoring.
The other two starters, Quadir Miller, a 5’10 Jr. guard, and Maurice Montgomery, a 6-5 Jr. forward, are both capable of putting up big numbers. With the loss of Jabari Merritt and Jihad Saunders to graduation, an increased workload should lead to increased production from both. Montgomery is an inside out force that dominates the glass at both ends and plays with a high motor.
Possibly, the Prospective Student-Athlete with the highest ceiling on the team is 6’3 So. guard, Jacob Beccles. He is an elite athlete, physically strong with exceptional body control and a sweet stroke. Coach Moore is expecting a break-out season for Beccles, his maturation and ability to impose his will could land the Generals back to the sweetest place on earth next March.
Other key returners include, 6’5 Sr. forward Aamir Sharif, 6’8 Sr. center Korey Bridges, 6’5 So. Jamal Carr. Lamar Glover a So. guard and 6’5 Jr. uber athletic wing Malcolm Gadson.
You might have noticed, in an earlier tweet this week, that I mentioned how there is a direct correlation between fall and winter success. Particularly, that the Colt Shootout has been known to be an indicator of winter success for District III’s big school divisions. Central York, the 2019 Champion will look to continue the past successes of both Reading and Manheim Township in league and district play. The Panther’s would love nothing better than to be the next champion on the verge of a 20 win season. Lets take a look at how -the bracket unfolded and the Panthers were crowned King…
The Semifinalists were Cedar Cliff, who got there behind solid team play and a stellar 2 game morning for 6’3 sr. guard Joey Zvorsky to knock off Waynesboro and Dallastown. 6’5 sr wing Elijah Eberly’s 21.5 ppg fueled the Bears of Elizabethtown past Susquehanna Township and Central Dauphin to victory. Central York and Chambersburg both only had to win one game to round out the Final Four. In Central York’s 54-43 victory over Cumberland Valley, 6’3 Gabe Guidinger and teammate Evan Eisenhart combined for 35 points. Chambersburg moved past Cedar Crest, behind the long ball of sr. guard Ethan Shreffler.
Elizabethtown moved into the finals taking down Cedar Cliff 56-38 with a balanced attack. Brody Beach had 17 points, with three- 3’s, pacing a Coach Parise’ squad , that had two other players score 15 or more, in Eberly 16 and Luke Pierson 15. In the other matchup Central York prevailed 45-37 over Chambersburg. Central York’s theme in the afternoon was everyone contributes. Mitch Saxton led a balanced attack, in which 7 Panthers scored, with 10pts. Evan Eisenhart tossed in 9 and Shiloh Johnson and Gabe Guidinger added 8 apiece.
In the Championship game both teams battled back and forth in the first half. The game was deadlocked at 21-21 but Central York outscored Elizabethtown 22-12 in the final 20 minutes of the day, to take the crown. Although the Panthers won by double figures, only one player in the game scored in double figures… and he wasn’t one of them. The Panthers suffocating defense held Elijah Eberly to only 9 points and teammate Luke Pierson managed the 10. For the Champions the leading scorers were Nolan Hubbs and Mitch Saxton with 9 apiece, followed by Gabe Guidinger 8 and Tejesh Chundura’s 7.
Elijah Eberly, Elizabethtown
6’4 Senior Forward
Elijah played like a scholarship worthy player this Saturday. Offensively, he was outstanding in the role of point foward, when the teams PG tweaked his ankle. His high for the day was 28pts in a 40 min running clock game against Central Dauphin. However, the most impressive aspect of his game was his ability to set the offensive table for others. He asserted himself when needed and trusted teammates in crucial moments, showing a poise and maturity that coaches will love. He made everyone around him better on the offensive end. Defensively, he used his length and quickness in passing lanes all day long. Good anticipation on steals and blocks.
Gabe Guidinger, Central York
Solid performances at both ends of the floor all day long. Gabe showcased his multi-talented (Dribble, Pass, Shoot, Defend) skill set relentlessly over his three games. He was an inside out juggernaut for opponents. He not only demonstrated the ability to score the ball from mid-range or at the rim, he defended all 5 positions effectively.
Joey Zvorsky, Cedar Cliff
Zvorsky was phenomenal in the morning session. He was already a very good player but the level he played at in his first two games was different than anything we had seen previously. Confident, poised, consistently on the attack, scoring efficiently, impacting the game at the defensive end. He was flat out the best player we seen in the AM. He fizzled a little late in game three but bounced back for a solid performance in the 3rd place game.
Ileri Ayo-Faleye, Cedar Crest
Ayo-Faleye was electric as always in transition. Today he demonstrated a real knock for getting the ball off the rim at the offensive end. He was quick off of his feet, often engaged in his second and third effort as opponents were landing their first. This obviously lead to multiple seond chance scoring opportunities for his team. Highlight reel dunks, with top of the block athleticism keeps him in our list even though play is inconsistent and not senior mature at times.
PROSPECTIVE STUDENT-ATHLETE OF THE DAY
Nick Peters, Cedar Cliff
The German transfer student is a Division I project. However, at 6-11 and with a stretch four skill set, he will be a hot commodity this winter. He appears to be adjusting to the physicality of the American game well; this will take some time. His passing and feel for the game are definite strengths we quickly noticed. He made an athletic play when running the floor that did show an upside that was very exciting. With 25+ high school games and an entire season of adjustment and improvement he could be the type of talent that gets a low major coach a pay bump 4 years from now.
Brody Beach, Elizabethtown – shot it lights out
Justice Easter – Central Dauphin – impacted game both ends
Jason Eberhart, Cedar Crest – solid inside and out
Evan Eisenhart, Central York – when engaged excellent
Nolan Gilbert, Cumberland Valley – consistent, effective
Jadon Green, Dallastown – scored the ball effortlessly
Kobe Green, Dallastown – performed at both ends
De’von Haggins, Central Dauphin – defense led to offense
Nate McGill, Northern – not his best but better than the rest
Luke Pierson, Elizabethtown – strong force for Bears
Cole Rhyne, Waynesboro – see McGill
Rance Russo, Central Dauphin – elevates teammates
Mitchell Saxton, Central York – put together 3 good games
Sam Sherry, Cumberland Valley – skilled big with upside
Ethan Shreffler, Chambersburg – dribble, pass, shoot- impactful
BRENDAN MELLOTT SPOILS EAGLES UPSET BID WITH LAST SECOND HEROICS.
CAMP HILL, PA
Talk to anyone in District III about the best 6-A teams in the area and Manheim Townships’ name is a constant in the conversation . Word coming from the city and suburbs of Harrisburg, Lancaster, Reading and York have the Blue Steaks making noise in March. Led by the wizardry of senior Tyler Crespo, one of the most dynamic guards in the state, this group has the experience to produce some historic local hardware for the school this season. Their opponent in the Colt Shootout championship, the Cumberland Valley Eagles may not be as well known entering the 2018-2019 season after missing the district playoffs last season. However, with a new coach and a plethora of energized seniors this group shown that opposing coaches will be checking the power ratings in late February to see where CV’s at in the bracket. Mark my words just like Saturday, these Eagles wont be an easy out!
Manheim Township defeated Carlisle and came from behind to beat Chambersburg to get to the final; While Cumberland Valley defeated Northern York, Susquehanna, and held off a strong comeback bid from Reading High en route to the final. The Championship game was a back and forth affair the entire game, even locked at half time 24-24. Cumberland Valley took the largest lead of the second half with 46.4 seconds remaining in the game, going up by 5, 54-49. But, Township scored closing the gap to 3 with 28.3 seconds remaining. After a timeout and quick foul CV was heading to the line. The Eagles were unable to connect on the front end of a one and one and Township scored quickly 54-53 20.5 remaining. CV again missed the front end of a one and one, leaving the door open for 2 year starter and team captain Brendan Mellott to knock down the go ahead jumper with under 5 seconds to play for Township. The Eagles did have one last chance but the layup was no good.
MOST VALUABLE PLAYER
TYLER CRESPO 2019
DYLAN BUZALKA 2019
WESLEY BUTLER 2019
ZACK OLDAC 2020
ETHAN SHREFFLER 2020
OMAR TANDIR 2019
DANIEL COLTER JR., 2019
TYLER COLLIER 2019
KOBE GREEN 2019
MAURICE CLARK 2019
EVAN EISENHART 2020
TREY SHUTTER 2020
RYAN MCGILL – NORTHERN YORK
TYREESE SMITH – SUSQUEHANNA
HOWIE RANKINE – CARLISLE
TY BANACH – CUMBERLAND VALLEY
SETH BROUSE – CHAMBERSBURG
DYLAN YOUNG 2022
While most of the mid-state will be focused on Trick or Treat, parades and costume parties, the Central PA basketball community will be in for a pre-season TREAT. Many of District III’s top playoff contenders in 2019 will be under 1 roof in a March-style elimination playoff bracket. Two plus weeks before the official PIAA practices get underway come out and see many of our areas top programs preparing for the rigors of the 2018-19 season, battling for the 2nd Annual Colts Shootout Championship.
2017-2018 District III Qualifiers
Reading – Champion
Chambersburg – Runner-Up
Manheim Twp – 4th
Dallastown – 5th
Cedar Crest – Elite 8,
6-A Cumberland Valley, Central Dauphin
Tyler Crespo – Manheim Township
Wesley Butler – Reading
Ryan McGill – Northern York
Billy Folk – Susquehanna
Tyler Collier – Chambersburg
Potential Shootout First-Teamers
Dylan Buzalka – Cumberland Valley
Joey Zvorsky – Cedar Cliff
Howie Rankine – Carlisle
Braden Richard – Central York
Ryan Smith – Central Dauphin
Dylan Young – Carlisle
Kevin Coleman – Susquehanna
10.27.18 12:00 PM Gym 1
The Chambersburg Trojans have the weapons to remain at the top of the Mid-Penn Commonwealth, to be the last team standing in District III’s 6-A bracket, and to be a PIAA bracket-buster come March. Coach Shawn Shreffler will lean on the inside/out experience and presence of 6’6″ senior Tyler Collier early and often. This weekend, the Trojans will be without a host of fall sport participants including Keyshawn Jones, Garner Funk, Terrell Williams, Tucker Perry, Kyere Morton, and Aaron Maynard. However, returning starter Seth Brouse and key returning reserves Ty Holsopple and Ethan Shreffler will make this group a difficult out.
Click Here for complete bracket
Manheim Township will be, without question, one of the most experienced teams in District III and possibly across the state, from District X (Erie) to VII (Philadelphia) with all five starters returning. Not that they have the fire-power of a Kennedy or Roman Catholic, respectively, but Coach Matt Johns does have plenty of power to claim their first District III title since the Blue Streaks became the first Lancaster-Lebanon school to win the district’s big school title in 43 years back in 1989. Led by the basketball wizardry of point guard 5’9″ 1000-point scorer and PREP SCENE PSA 2019 Tyler Crespo, along with returning starters Brenden Mellott, Tyler Vicidomini, Zack Oldac, Hilton Ridley and key reserves Will Greiner and Mickey Stokes. You can expect some March Madness from this group!
10.27.18 11:00 AM Gym 1
Head Coach Gary Martin and the Indians look to return to the District III 4-A playoffs behind the high-powered offensive prowess of 6’4″ senior, Billy Folk; the relentless defensive effort of 6’3″ senior, Tyreese Smith; and the emergence of PREP SCENE PSA 2021 Kevin Coleman.
To view all Colts Shootout previews click here.
For complete Colts Shootout Bracket click here.