WYBA, Back and Better Than Ever


Bobby Rabaioli


It’s that time of year again where the boys in Walpole High School start to focus more on who their next opponent is rather than their school work.  Many of this year’s teams have high aspirations for themselves, but only one can end the season with a win.  This year features a deep league with no clear cut favorite to take the title.


Spurs– Led by Coach Weinacht, the senior heavy group will be looking to not only dominate in the post with Pete ‘Deer’ Hoegler and Bobby Rabaioli, but at the three point with sharp shooters CJ Weinacht and Jack Stedman.  The only question is how much help will the seniors get from the underclassmen.  Cory Cisternelli looks to be the man who could make or break the Spurs season.  One player Coach Weinacht should look out for is Nuggets’ Mike Gruelich after passing on him in the draft after previously picking him the last three years.  Expect a blood bath in that game.

Bulls– The dynamic duo of the Smith brothers should cause problems for other teams’ back courts as they can pull up or drive to the lane.  First overall pick James Smith is already considered one of the best players in the league who has an uncanny ability to steal.  Look for key contributions from the Xia brothers and Pat Connell.

Nets- Once again the ageless Coach Croak gets his man, Colin ‘The Rat’ Murray.  Murray, like Smith, is already considered to be an All-Star by many coaches who is known for sneaking around and stealing the ball from behind.  Look for the slick Jake Celentano to drain 3’s and dish the ball better than anyone in the league.  Additionally, Dillon Knight will be a force down low.

Heat- Not only are the Heat one of the deepest teams in the league, but they have superstar Jack Lavanchy.  Lavanchy carried his team last year as a soph0more all the way to a semi-finals before losing to the Spurs.  Harry Berkland and Pat Myers will be manning the back court with Shawn Sarnie down low.


In The Mix

Rockets-  This year’s team is 50/50 on which direction they are headed.  Jon Rockwood and DJ Villa have good chemistry together that will make for a ferocious 1-2 punch.  Look out for Ryan Cisternelli who seems to be the man everybody wanted in the draft.  Last year, Cisternelli almost led his team back from a significant deficit in the playoffs with a 10+ point effort in the final two minutes of the game.

Lakers- Another senior oriented group who is going to be a question mark on the defensive side of the ball.  With sharpshooters Joey Daaboul and Matt Brownsword, the Lakers will need help from big man Frankie Welter to grab rebounds and create more offensive opportunities.  Freshman Justin Burns and Tim Hayes both have speed and athletic ability that makes the Lakers a dark horse that could contend with the best.

Nuggets- With senior leadership, this team should have no trouble gelling together.  The only problem is that Coach Plaut of the Sonics guaranteed Brendan Chaisson that he would draft him.  With that plan falling through, Chaisson stated, “If we win one game all year, I’ll make sure it’s against the Sonics.”  On another note, senior Mike ‘Shank’ Gruelich will make his presence felt down in the low post and the free throw line as he has the unique ability to get to the strike.

Wizards- Led by Coach Walsh, Aidan Moore and company will be one of the best defensive teams in the league.  With Moore’s natural ability to block shots and Brendan Sullivan’s high pressure defense, opponents will have a tough time scoring from any where on the court.  Add in the length of Shane Murphy and Andrew Nevin and this team could be making a deep playoff run.

76ers- This is the team that will be the most interesting to watch.  With the defensive play of Steve Phelan and Matt Toti, the 76ers could be a clear cut favorite to win it all.  The physical play of football superstar Steve Cuqua will also be intimidating for players who are  not used to contact sports.  The Morey brothers are this team’s X-factor as it depends on them if they can contribute enough points every game.



Sonics- A Coach who is usually a man of his word, Coach Plaut will be having nightmares until his big game against the Nuggets.  Led by Colby Musco, Rocco Frattasio, Jerry Louis, and Kevin ‘The Cat’ Curran, the Sonics will be a force in the regular season.  The only problem with the team is their lack of height which many teams could take advantage of down the stretch.

Knicks- A junior based team led by Chris Bender, Matt Tori, Timmy McNamara and Scott McLean, the Knicks will have trouble without any senior leadership on the team.  Freshman Matt Tosone will use his speed to help  bring the Knicks out of the ‘Pretenders’.

Celtics- Comparable with the Knicks, the senior leadership is not there.  Drew Naismith and Kevin Mansen led the sharpshooting group against a field of competitors comparable to the 90’s in the NBA.  Dan Frankel and Andrew Drogan will also need to be excellent if the Celtics have any chance at making a deep playoff run.

Magic- Mark Demarais will be looking to make a name for himself after his brother, Tom, easily handled the league last year.  Nick Ferguson and Bobby Ross bring the senior leadership.  Ferguson has the unique ability to dribble the ball with both hands.  Watch out for Xaverian’s own Quinn Kelley who will be rocking yellow apparel everywhere.

Mavericks- The Mavericks will live and die with Colton Mitchell.  Also, led By Tom Heffernan and John Stanton, the Mavericks will be in good hands as they have the ability to hit the three right up there with the best of them.  The only problem is their lack of height which should cause problems and why they are a ‘pretender’