With the opening day of practice only days away, the Lackawanna College men's basketball team is growing restless to get onto the court and ready themselves for their November 1st road opener against Luzerne County Community College. That includes Brian Coyle, who will be looking forward to his first college victory as a collegiate head coach.
Coyle will have at least 4 players returning from last season's squad, who bring significant playing time into that initial contest. A 2016 starter, Cartier Telford (Robesonia, PA), leads that group with 31 games played, 305 points scored, 79 rebounds, 85 assists and 35 steals. He is followed by RJ Clarke (Brooklyn, NY), who played in 25 games and was credited with 61 points, 58 rebounds 45 assists and 10 steals; Roman Lettlough (Harrisburg, PA), a forward, who appeared in 24 games, and recorded 48 points, 56 rebounds 7 steals and 4 assists; and, Kyle Green (Harrisburg, PA), who was on the floor in 19 games and was credited with 19 points, 10 rebounds 17 assists and 4 steals.
Newcomers to the squad are 6'6 Eric Snipes (Manhattan, NY), three 6'7 forwards, Jonathan Williams (Dunmore, PA), Justin Iton (Hackensack, NJ), and Khristan Gill (Inglewood, NJ); a 6'5 forward, Stevan Rodriguez (Reading, PA) and 6'4 Darryl Carr (Norristown, PA). The remainder of the roster are swingmen Keyanate Kelly (Saulsberry, MD), Jordan Brooks (Harrisburg, PA) and Dehaven Smith (Staten Island, NY); and guards, Coy Van Tillburg (Mansfield, OH), Elijah Baker (Chesterfield, VA), Gilberto Benz (Reading, PA), Javontay Pipken (Staten Island, NY), Ray Mills (Philadelphia, PA), Hassan Coleman (Chester, PA) and Theron Reddy (Goose Creek, SC).
Year in year out the Region XIX DII games are the most important in determining how successful Lackawanna's season will be. Therefore, it is important to be prepared for those games. Normally, the Falcons get to prepare for those contests through an evaluation of their roster in October practices and on court experience in non-conference games before the conference opener. This year, Lackawanna won't have that luxury. After the LCCC game, they play at Rowan College at Burlington County two days later. It is therefore essential that these 20 players jell together as a team during their October practice sessions.