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TJ hoopsters string together highly successful two-year run

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The senior members of the Thomas Jefferson boys' basketball program helped string together highly successful back-to-back seasons at the WPIAL Class AAA level.

The Jaguars won a school-record 23 games this season, and compiled a 40-12 overall record the past two years.

Led by a strong senior class — there were 11 seniors on this year's team — Thomas Jefferson successfully defended its Section 4-AAA title in 2013-14. The Jaguars won 23 of 24 section contests over the past two seasons.

“It was a really good year, but we didn't achieve some of our goals. We ended up 23-4, won our section for the second year in a row, and for the fourth time in the last six years,” said Dom DeCicco, Thomas Jefferson's veteran head coach. “We also won two WPIAL playoff games and one state playoff game.”

The Jaguars' starting lineup this season consisted of seniors Zach Talley and Jason Horan in the backcourt, Chase Winovich and Eric Fairman in the frontcourt, and swingman Charlie Scharbo, the team's leading scorer.

Zach Good, a senior guard, regularly provided a spark off the bench for the Jaguars, and was complemented by senior reserves Ben Miscavage, Christian Breisinger, Steve Andros, Dan Terpin and and Zach Michak.

“I know the kids competed very hard, and all the seniors were great examples to the underclassman on how to compete,” said DeCicco, the Jaguars' ninth-year floor boss. “I am indebted to all these seniors. They ended up winning a lot of basketball games in their careers.”

Next year's team will be built around juniors Russ Seiss, Frankie Langan, Frank Gentille and Cam Sarber.

Two top sophomore prospects are C.J. Mason and Steve Dunlap.

“As always, our standards don't change; we expect to compete for the playoffs,” DeCicco said. “We have a very hard schedule and we will be starting five new players, but several of them got valuable varsity and playoff experience this year.”

Ray Fisher is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at 412-388-5820 or rfisher@tribweb.com.

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