SVSJ preview: Cedarcrest boys’ basketball looks to shine, but has some huge shoes to fill

EDITOR’S NOTE: We continue our series of team previews today by focusing on Cedarcrest High School’s boys’ basketball team.

The Cedarcrest High School boys’ basketball team suffered a huge graduation loss after last season in the form of the great Zach Taylor, now making a big impact as a freshman in college for Carroll College in Montana. But many of the other key pieces from last season’s Cascade Conference co-championship team are back and the Red Wolves are looking to make it back to the top in 2013-14.

Back as coach for his third season is Mark Prince. The Sammamish resident took over following the resignation of Micah Rieke and has continued to build on the success Rieke had in 2010, when CHS made its return to state after an over 50-year absence. The team finished 13-10 last season, but that record was a bit of a misnomer, as it was about strong league play (12-2) balanced out by struggles against non-conference foes, where they only won one game against a non-Cascade team.

The Red Wolves have a good senior group this fall; leading the way is guard Jordan Corpus, who was Taylor’s right-hand man on offense last season and will now be the key weapon on the offensive end for Cedarcrest. Prince describes his senior star as a leader, a great finisher and someone with a great work ethic, so look for Corpus to provide significant leadership on the floor this season.

Playing the post this season will be senior Chad Klingenberg, the younger brother of recent CHS football star Jared, who is now playing at Idaho. Prince likes what Klingenberg brings to the table. “Good quickness for a center,” he said by email to the SVSJ. “Athletic for his size.”

Three other seniors worth watching will be forwards Austin Paxman and Nick Peden, and guard Andrew Gutman. These three should see a lot of minutes this season for the Red Wolves, who are expected to have a fight on their hands in the conference. Prince tells the SVSJ a lot of Cascade teams have multiple top returners, making for what he says will be “a very competitive conference.” Among the teams to watch will be King’s and Archbishop Murphy, but keep an eye on Sultan, who made a nice run at districts last season and almost made it to state.

Prince is looking for his team to play with enthusiasm and work hard every day. “We want to play with heart everyday practice (and) every game. If we do, we feel we will have success,” the coach said.

The Red Wolves keep all of their same nonleague opponents from last season, and will open the season at home December 3 against Sammamish. Cedarcrest hosts the Valley Cup game December 21 against Mount Si. Start times for all games this season have been moved up to 6:45 p.m. from last season’s 7:00 p.m. start time.

Rhett Workman

About Rhett Workman

Rhett Workman is the editor of the Snoqualmie Valley Sports Journal. Workman is a veteran sports journalist, having covered Snoqualmie Valley sports for nearly a decade with the Snoqualmie Valley Record newspaper before starting up the SVSJ. Workman's coverage has earned the support and respect of Valley coaches, players, parents and fans, and the SVSJ continues the standard of coverage that Workman brought to the Valley Record.
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