Experienced Bucs hope to makes waves in Huron League

M.R.E. Neal, now a junior, was Riverview’s leading scorer in 2018. Photo by Larry Caruso.

Hank Minckiewicz

The start of some high school seasons are a mystery, New payers, new coaches, new systems often add up to a huge question mark that cannot be answered until the actual games begin.

Other times, you have a pretty good idea what to expect.

Put Riverview boys basketball coach Marcus Voelz in that second group.

When Voelz opened the gym door for practice this season he found his entire starting five from 2018 waiting for him, along with four other seniors to back them up.

And right off the bat the Bucs have looked like a cohesive team.

“We’ve looked pretty good,” Voelz said. “In addition to the five starters and the other seniors, we got a lot of good players from a good junior varsity team.”

Last year the jayvee was 16-4.

The Bucs are led by their captains, senior Austin Poe and junior M.R.E Neal. Neal was the team’s leading scorer as a sophomore last season and both he a Poe were named All-Huron League second team.

Those two will be joined by high-energy junior Jimari Moultrie and fellow juniors Jagger Kilberg and Caleb Sullivan. Sullivan started the season on the jayvee team last year and moved into the starting varsity lineup for the last half dozen games of 2018.

“We have a lot of athletes on the team this year,” said Voelz. “And they’ve all put in a lot of work in the off-season to become stronger and better players.”

Following the starters off the bench will be seniors Kenny Hightower, Caden Corso, Dominick LaChappelle and Paul Laurain. The team is rounded out by juniors Ian Smith, Ian Vigneau and Aidan O’Neil. Sean McGovern is the manager.

“Last year we were a pretty inexperienced team learning a new system,” said Voelz. “It caused some problems and we lost our first seven games.

“This year we’re going to put a well-seasoned team out their right from the beginning and we expect it to make a huge difference.”

Monroe St. Mary Catholic Central, Carleton Airport and Flat Rock shared the league title last year and Voelz said those three teams will be strong again this year. But, he added, he expects his Bucs to be right among that group.

‘I will be disappointed if we are not among the contenders for the league title,” he said.

The Bucs open the season with non-league games against Southgate Anderson, Taylor Prep, Summit Academy and Dearborn Heights Ann Annapolis before getting the league campaign started with a game against Flat Rock.

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