Boys Varsity Basketball
Game Summaries & Headlines.
Fifth-year coach Paul Ferguson has high hopes for a Columbus North boys basketball team that opens its 2019-2020 season on Nov. 26 against Heritage Christian in Memorial Gym.
With a group led by junior Blake Barker, senior Nicholas Schiavello and junior Reese Harmon, the Bull Dogs strive to build on a 16-8 effort last time that include a runner-up finish in Conference Indiana at 4-1. Barker, a 6-1 guard, is the top returnee after averaging 17.0 points, 3.7 rebounds and 2.2 assists. Schiavello, a 6-4 guard, provided 15.3 points, 3.9 rebounds and 2.0 assists. Harmon, a 5-11 guard, contributed 8.9 points, 2.3 rebounds and 3.4 assists.
“Blake is an athletic scorer and lock-down defender who has grown in his play-making abilities and can play either guard spot,” Ferguson said. “Nicholas is a smooth scorer with an excellent mid-range game as well as an excellent 3-point stroke. He has added muscle to his frame and is finishing stronger around the basket. Reese started at the point as a sophomore, and his court vision and leadership skills make him a key catalyst for us.”
Other holdovers include 6-2 junior guard Jakub Trusina, 6-5 senior forward Cameron Wischmeyer and 6-3 senior forward Will King. Trusina and Wischmeyer each averaged 1.8 points in varsity games last season.
“Jakub is an excellent 3-point shooter and passer who has gotten stronger and become a better defender,” the coach said. “Cameron is counted on to be a presence in the middle, and his passing and finishing were a big part of the Bull Dogs’ success in the summer. Will brings a hard-nosed tenacity on the boards and around the rim both offensively and defensively. He has a knack for winning 50-50 balls and has shown an improved offensive game in the offseason.”
Casper Clark, a 6-6 senior forward, returns to basketball after bypassing it as a junior. New faces include 6-1 junior guard Max Wilson and 6-2 freshman guard Cooper Horn.
“Casper brings size and strength to the lineup while adding a low-post presence with an array of moves,” Ferguson said. “Max looks poised to become an varsity contributor after an excellent offseason, while Cooper is a talented offensive player with a high basketball IQ and a lethal outside shot. He is working to become a more physical defender and rebounder.”
The Bull Dogs begin official practice on Nov. 11, the follow the Heritage Christian game by hosting Hauser on Nov. 30. Columbus North then goes on the road for games at Shelbyville, Martinsville, Fishers, and Columbus East before a home game with Scottsburg on Dec. 21. CN will face New Albany in the first round of the two-day Noblesville Invitational. It then begins CI action on Jan. 3 at Terre Haute South.
Ferguson expresses optimism about his team.
“We have a strong perimeter team with a lot of depth at the guard spots,” he said. “The biggest questions revolve around how we defend other teams with size and can we develop consistent low-post play to complement our excellent outside shooting.”
PHOTO: Nicholas Schiavello (23) averaged 15.3 points, 3.9 rebounds and 2.0 assists as a junior for Columbus North boys basketball during the 2018-19 season.