BOYS BASKETBALL CAPSULES
AIKEN COACH: Thomas Ryan, second year
2002 RECORD: 5-18
RETURNING STARTERS: G Adron Marshall (Sr., 6-4, 185); F Ack Cephaus (Sr., 6-5, 205); G Terrance Smith (Jr., 6-1, 185); G Tony Williams (Sr., 6-4, 170)
OUTLOOK: After a disappointing campaign last year, the Hornets have reason to expect a better season. Marshall and his 16-point, six-rebound average return, and the rest of the Aiken squad is long and athletic. It could challenge for a postseason spot.
COACH: Jamie Washington, first year
2002 RECORD: not available
RETURNING PLAYERS: C/PF Tristen Heyward (Sr., 6-5, 200); SG/SF Michael Washington (Jr., 6-3, 190), PG/SG Brian Smith (Jr., 5-7, 155)
OUTLOOK: After winning a state championship in 2001, Allendale-Fairfax faltered and lost in the second round last year. The team will miss Eric Priester's and Derrell Doe's 18 and 12 points per game, respectively, but the its athleticism will keep them in contention.
COACH: Mike Highsmith, second year
2002 RECORD: 9-12
RETURNING STARTERS: G Stephon Robinson (Sr., 6-1, 155), F/C Brooker Simmons (Sr., 6-3, 170)
OUTLOOK: With team unity and good quickness, the Warhorses will try to overcome a lack of size. With Jasper County and Silver Bluff in the same region, Barnwell won't compete for a conference title. But a trip to the postseason could happen.
COACH: Mike Beasley, fourth year
2002 RECORD: 14-9
RETURNING STARTERS: F Chris Williams (Sr., 6-0, 175); F Jervae Brown (Sr., 6-2, 250); C Rashaan Davis (Jr., 6-2, 180); G Nick Bradley (Jr., 5-6, 140); F Adrian Wade (Soph., 6-2, 210)
OUTLOOK: With the graduation of Brandon Isaac, Elliot Williams and Mickenzie Atterberry, the Fighting Hawks don't have that go-to player they'll need. On the plus side, Blackville-Hilda might have more depth than the program has ever had.
COACH: John Schumpert, second year
2002 RECORD: 11-9
RETURNING STARTERS: F Ariel White (Sr., 6-4, 240); G Gary Jones (Sr., 6-0, 170); C Jed Kelley (Sr., 6-7, 200); G Jarvis Adams (Sr., 6-0, 175); F Detrie Lomax (Sr., 6-1, 165)
OUTLOOK: McCormick should make a return trip to the postseason while improving on last year's record. White averaged 12 rebounds and five blocks per game last year, and Kelley is a load in the paint. The Chiefs return all but two players from last season.
COACH: Mark Wright, fifth year
2002 RECORD: 12-12
RETURNING STARTERS: F Casey Geter (Sr., 6-1, 160); C Carnel Williams (Jr., 6-2, 175)
OUTLOOK: The leading scorer and leading rebounder from last year returns - Geter averaged 13.1 points and Williams grabbed eight rebounds a game - and the Mustangs will have more size and experience in the blocks. In order to win, they'll need to find solid point and shooting guards.
COACH: Keith Arrington, fifth year
2002 RECORD: 18-10
RETURNING STARTERS: F Henri Perry (Sr., 6-4, 210); F Andre Young (Sr., 6-5, 190); F Darren Curry (Sr., 6-5, 190); PG Justin Wheeler (Jr., 6-1, 180)
OUTLOOK: After a visit to the state quarterfinals, the Yellow Jackets will begin the year ranked No. 4 in the preseason poll. Three starters are taller than 6-4, and the four starters that return combined to average 47 points and 25 rebounds last season. A lock to make a deep run into the playoffs.
COACH: Willie Brunson, seventh year
2002 RECORD: not available
RETURNING STARTERS: G/F Chamus Morris (5-11, 160); G/F Ricky Myer (6-0, 160)
OUTLOOK: Morris and Myer will have their hands full this year after the graduation of seven seniors, including Cedric Williams - an Augusta Chronicle all-area second-team player. That will make it tough to advance to the postseason.
COACH: Samuel Lilly, sixth year
2002 RECORD: 24-7
RETURNING STARTERS: PG Antwan Boyd (Sr., 5-7, 160); PF Bobby Davis (Jr., 6-5, 210); F Terrance Crawford (Jr., 6-3, 190)
OUTLOOK: Obviously, losing South Carolina freshman Brandon Wallace hurts. But Davis - who averaged 15 points and 16.3 rebounds a game last year - will help shoulder the load for the Class AA defending state champs. Crawford also is a strong scorer.
COACH: Carlos Hope, first year
2002 RECORD: 14-11
RETURNING STARTERS: F Stristan Cullum (Sr., 6-1, 190)
OUTLOOK: In Hope's first season, he'll have to deal with a team that lost four senior starters - including center Josh Jackson. In order to deal with the Thoroughbreds' inexperience, they'll have to rely on their athleticism and quickness.
COACH: Wayne Marchant, third year
2002 RECORD: 7-15
RETURNING STARTERS: SG Quinn Jones (Sr., 5-10, 180); G Dexter Smith (Sr., 5-10, 185); C Lamont Mathis (Jr., 6-6, 250); F Barry Lanham (Jr., 6-0, 180); PG Coco Hillary (Soph., 5-10, 180)
OUTLOOK: The Rebels' season should be more similar to 2001-02 when they won the region instead of last year when they struggled. Jones and Mathis (a combined 28 points per game) will have to be big for Strom Thurmond to return to the state tournament.
COACH: Charles Gregory, fourth year
2002 RECORD: 5-19
RETURNING STARTERS: F Jake Garvin (Jr., 6-0, 180); G Ronnie Tyler (Soph., 5-9, 140); G Seth Garvin (Soph., 5-9, 140)
OUTLOOK: With four players 6-foot-1 or taller, the Eagles should be one of the bigger squads in Region 5-A, and the point guard troubles of the past three years should be solved. But Wagener-Salley still lacks the big-game experience that might be crucial.
The following schools did not submit information: Williston-Elko