Ligonier Valley boys basketball team boasts size, talent
By Chris Adamski
Published: Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2012, 8:45 p.m.
It's not so much the sheer size of Ligonier Valley's top five frontcourt players that is of concern to opponents. It's what that combined 32 feet, 7 inches can do.
There's an abundance of quality in that quantity.
The Rams boast three starters who stand at least 6-5 and two top reserves who are 6-7.
“Yeah, we feel very confident with all the height we have,” 6-5 senior so-captain Zach Yeskey said. “But we feel confident with all the athleticism we have, too. That's a big part of it. It's not just that we're big.”
Joining Yeskey in the starting frontcourt for Ligonier Valley are 6-7 junior Alec Bloom and 6-5 sophomore Jordan Jones.
“Those are three big guys who can all bring the ball down the court under pressure, handle the ball and shoot the outside shot,” second-year Rams coach John Berger said. “They're really versatile.
“Jones plays the ‘3,' Bloom the ‘4' and Yeskey's more of a ‘5.' But they have pretty much free reign to play. They can make it hard for opponents to get rebounds when they're crashing the boards.”
Off the bench, Ligonier Valley brings more size in 6-7 Micah Tennant and 6-7 Max Jabludovsky.
The Rams easily have the tallest team in the Heritage Conference and likely the biggest in all of District 6. There can't be many teams in the entire state to match Ligonier Valley when it comes to the fact the fifth-tallest player in its rotation is 6-5.
Yet with all that height, it might just be the shortest player on the court most nights who is the Rams' most valuable. Senior point guard Ty Ferlin stands only 5-6 — but the co-captain is the one entrusted with helping to distribute the ball to all the talented big men.
“Absolutely, he's our general out there on the floor,” Yeskey said. “It's important to have a guard who's the general directing guys. And he's a warrior.”
“He's the quarterback,” Berger said. “He makes things go.”
Ferlin might be the quarterback of Ligonier Valley's hoops team, but it was Scott Fennell who was the Rams' quarterback of the football team. A 6-1 junior guard, Fennell is the fifth starter in basketball, a player who can shoot 3-pointers and also score via penetration.
Senior Patrick Waugh and junior Alex Tutino are guards who contribute off the bench for a team that goes nine deep most nights with ease.
“I feel real good about this team this year,” said Yeskey, who was the team's leading scorer through the first two weeks of the regular season. “With all the guys we have, I know we're headed in the right direction.”
Ligonier Valley had a vastly improved record last season from the prior campaign, and it expects to make another leap forward this season.
“The Heritage Conference championship is what we're competing for,” Berger said. “There's never been one won by Ligonier Valley. We also want to make it further than the second round in the district playoffs... but first and foremost is the Heritage Conference. We want to win that for the first time.
“The only team that can beat us this year is ourselves... All we need to do is the little things like make our free throws, and keep growing as a team.”
Chris Adamski is a freelance writer.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Connellsville pulls away in 3rd quarter to beat Baldwin
- Versatile Dedert leads Plum boys past Kiski Area
- Perz scores game-high 33 to lift Norwin past Monessen
- Monessen falters late, 68-63
- High school roundup: Vincentian’s Wolf scores 46 in victory
- Franklin Regional girls win tournament crown
- Daily News roundup: McKeesport boys edge Shaler
- Greensburg high school roundup: Uniontown tops Belle Vernon
- Norwin girls hold their own in season-opening tournament
- Penn-Trafford boys learn from opening losses
- Girls teams from Karns City, Redbank Valley have title aspirations