A year after reaching the ESPN NHSI championship game, St. Benedict’s Prep is reloading with a group of foreign players.
The Gray Bees lose Tyler Ennis (Syracuse), Mike Young (Pittsburgh) and Denzell Taylor (Old Dominion) from their core, but return the backcourt tandem of Isaiah Briscoe (2015) and Jonathan Williams (2014).
Coach Mark Taylor’s club also brings back guard Damon Wilson (2015).
St. Ben’s — which does not compete in the New Jersey State Athletic Association — will also have four Puerto Rican players in 6-6 2016 forward Nick Washington, who played on the team last year, as well as 5-11 guards Josh Colon and Edwin Cancel, both 2016, and 6-9 forward Arnaldo Toro (2016).
Washington, Toro and Cancel are all playing for the Puerto Rico 16U National Team, and all four (including Toro) play for the Puerto Rico Playmakers AAU club.
Two Lithuanian big men — 6-10 2014 Norbertas Giga (pictured) and 6-10 2015 Domantas Pavlovskis – also join the squad. Giga averaged 5.6 points and 4.7 rebounds last year for the Lithuanian U17 team in the World Championship, according to FIBA.com. Pavlovskis averaged 3.9 points and 3.3 rebounds for the Lithuanian U16 team.
Taylor is also finalizing the addition of two more shooters — who he says are 6-4 and 6-5.
“St. Benedict’s looks as strong an deep as it has ever been,” he said.