CCA boys basketball set to begin season

DETERMINATION: Crossroads Charter Academy’s Tate Wickes (32) drives to the net against Brethren last season. (Pioneer file photo)

DETERMINATION: Crossroads Charter Academy’s Tate Wickes (32) drives to the net against Brethren last season. (Pioneer file photo)

BIG RAPIDS — Crossroads Charter Academy was 11-11 in boys basketball last season and the Cougars want nothing less than a winning record this winter.

The Cougars open the season Tuesday night at McBain Northern Michigan Christian in a nonleague matchup.

CCA graduated key players from last year, including Joe Balanda, Josh Henderson and James Strickland, but coach Jason Kostecki has some players returning, including seniors Brooks Angell, Ben Martinez and Luke Zandstra.

“Brooks and Ben will primarily be guards,” Kostecki said. “Luke is going to play anywhere I need him depending on personnel on the floor. He’ll be the utility guy.”

Other promising performers include 6-foot-4 junior Levi Davis, who is new to the school.

“He has some size we haven’t had in the past,” Kostecki said. “He’s looking good.”

Tate Wickes, a junior guard, started last season.

“He’s has the potential to be a decent player,” Kostecki said.

Two freshmen guards who were brought up to varsity are Jackson Wickes, Tate’s brother, and Britton Angell.

“We’re looking OK,” Kostecki said. “We’re still a little young and a little raw, but overall for the start, we’re progressing nicely. We scrimmaged at Reed City (last week) and they gave us a real good test. They’re quick and athletic. It exposed what our weaknesses are and what we need to work on. It was a pretty good test for us.”

Playing tough defense and running the floor will be among CCA’s strengths, Kostecki said.

“We’ll have some speed,” he said. “The nice thing is our big guys have speed, too. They’ll be out leading the break. It will be nice to get out in transition.”

The first home game is Thursday in the West Michigan D League opener against Onekama. The Cougars have 16 league games.

å“Baldwin, Onekama and Brethren will all be pretty good,” Kostecki said. “Baldwin and Onekama split the league championship last year. Onekama returns quite a  few athletic kids. That will be a big challenge.”

avatar

Posted by John Raffel

John is a sports reporter with the Pioneer as well as the Herald Review and The Lake County Star. He also coordinates the weekly Pioneer sports outdoors page. He can be reached at (231) 592-8356 or by email at jraffel@pioneergroup.com.

Leave a Reply