Davis leads the pack
It might not seem fair that Davis returns nine players, including three starters, from a team that shared the league championship with Chiawana and went on to finish fifth at the 4A state tournament.
But that's life in the CBBN 4A.
However, not all hope is lost for the rest of the league.
"Davis will be really good. Everybody else will be chasing them," said Richland coach Earl Streufert, whose team returns three starters after coming within one game of a state berth.
The Pirates did, however, graduate three of their top five scorers. David Trimble (14.1 points) -- a returning all-CBBN first-team pick -- and Davonte Luckett (9.8) will lead Davis' hopes of returning to the Tacoma Dome.
The Bombers lost a lot of presence inside, graduating four-year starter and top rebounder Calvin Douglas, but they've got a strong guard rotation led by Colter Quick (10.6), Adam Baker (7.5) and Tyrell Turner (5.8) that should make them a contender.
"I think we'll be tough check by the time it's all said and done," Streufert said.
Richland will look to 6-1 Casey Malone, 6-6 Nathan Streufert and 6-5 Spencer Wheeler to battle on the low block.
Chiawana won a share of its first-ever league title last season and returns two of the top players from that team in F Jordan Downing (11.3) and G Miquiyah Zamora (11.6).
The Riverhawks got another break when Brandon (3.7) and Zach Mendoza (7.0) transferred from Pasco.
Senior post Alex Babinchuk has shown early promise anchoring Chiawana's inside game.
"We have some tough kids," said Riverhawks coach Chad Herron. "But we've only got two players who have been in a playoff basketball game."
Downing, has sat out the team's first four nonleague games but is expected to play tonight in Chiawana's CBBN opener.
At Walla Walla, coach John Golden returns two senior starters in post Rob Ferenz (5.6) and guard Moe Handcox (7.9) and has been getting good early-season production from senior guard Josh Eggers.
The Blue Devils were picked to finish at the bottom of the league last season but scrapped their way to a fourth-place finish.
Moses Lake had a few growing pains last year, finishing 7-13 under new coach John Hohman. This season, the Chiefs are hoping to re-establish a winning tradition.
They've got two returning senior starters in post Jordan Garcia (6.6) and guard Bryce Perez (6.0). Junior post Cam Ballard will try to make some noise in the low post.
Wenatchee could be the most improved team in the league this season, returning eight players -- including starters Dillon Sugg (10.1) Brock Fuller (3.2) and Nathan Allison (5.6). They Panthers also have good size across the front line.
Eisenhower could also be a team to watch out for with returning starters Kolney Cassel (4.8) and Andy Soto (7.5).
Predicted finish: Davis, Richland, Chiawana, Walla Walla, Wenatchee, Moses Lake, Eisenhower.
Coach: Chad Herron (3rd year).
Last state trip: Never.
Returning players: F Jordan Downing, sr., 6-0; G Josh Hergert, sr., 6-0; G Enrique Perez, sr., 5-9; G/F Miquiyah Zamora, sr., 6-1.
Stepping up: F Alex Babinchuk, sr., 6-4; G Jesse Briones, jr., 5-9; P Caleb Knight, jr., 6-5; G Brandon Mendoza, soph., 5-9; G Zach Mendoza, sr., 5-9; G Josue Torres, sr., 5-7.
Coach: Eli Juarez (7th year).
Last state trip: 2011.
Returning players: G Michael Acosta, sr., 6-0; F Lavonte Allen, sr., 6-4; G Chris Chapman, sr., 6-2; G Cooper Kupp, sr., 6-0; G/F Davonte Luckett, sr., 6-2; G Raymond Navarro, sr., 5-11; G David Trimble, sr., 6-2; G Carlos Perea Vijarro, jr., 6-1; G Deion Wright, sr., 6-1.
Stepping up: G Josh Gasseling, soph., 5-11; F Max Jones, fr., 6-2; F Sam Knox, sr., 6-3; G Nikhil Lizotte, fr., 5-9.
Coach: Colton Monti (first year).
Last state trip: 2009.
Returning players: G Kolney Cassel, jr., 6-3; F Don Nickins, sr., 6-2; G Brandin Partlow, sr., 5-10; F Andy Soto, soph., 6-4.
Stepping up: F Jacob Becker, sr., 6-2; F Keanen Brewer, sr., 6-1; F Tony French, sr., 6-3; C Miguel Gomez, soph., 6-7; G Ridge Harmon, soph., 5-10; G Alfredo Hernandez, soph., 5-11; G Taran Hernandez, sr., 5-11; G Denzel Jones, sr., 5-10; F Mike Jones, sr., 6-3.
Moses Lake Chiefs
Coach: John Hohman (2nd year).
Last state trip: 1998 (3A).
Returning players: G Kevin Bennett, sr., 5-10; P Jordan Garcia, sr., 6-1; G Bryce Perez, sr., 6-3; G Cliff Phillips, sr., 6-0; .
Stepping up: P Easton Baker, jr., 6-3; P Cameron Ballard, jr., 6-3; G Jordan Chavez, soph., 5-11; G Josh Hirz, soph., 6-0; G Trino Rubio, jr., 5-8; G Nick Sutherland, soph., 5-11; P Dennis Ulyanchuk, jr., 6-3.
Coach: Earl Streufert (13th year).
Last state trip: 2008.
Returning players: G Adam Baker, sr., 6-2; G Tyler Fuller, jr., 5-9; F Casey Malone, sr., 6-1; G Colter Quick, sr., 6-3; G Nathan Streufert, soph., 6-6; G Tyrell Turner, sr., 6-1.
Stepping up: F Levi Broeske, jr., 6-4; F Jack Eiden, sr., 6-4; G Mason Hilty, jr., 6-0; G Peyton Radliff, soph., 5-9; F Spencer Wheeler, jr., 6-4.
Walla Walla Blue Devils
Coach: John Golden (7th year).
Last state trip: 2010.
Returning players: G Josh Eggers, sr., 5-9; P Robert Ferenz, sr., 6-4; G Moe Handcox, sr., 5-10; G Nick Peasley, sr., 5-10.
Stepping up: F Sam Arias, jr., 6-2; F Tanner Cranor, jr., 6-6; F Kyle Jameson, sr., 6-1; F Michael Lesmeister, sr., 6-3; G Spencer Locati, soph., 5-11; G Will Parnicky, sr., 5-11; G Gabe Porter, soph., 5-11; G Blake Rowley, sr., 5-8; G Aaron Thonney, jr., 6-0.
Coach: Ron Stone (first year).
Last state trip: 1998.
Returning players: G Nathan Allison, jr., 6-4; P Austin Chandler, jr., 6-6; G Conner Faulkner, jr., 5-7; G Brock Fuller, sr., 6-0; P Alex Hopkins, jr., 6-2; G Peter Siderius, sr., 6-1; F Isaiah Brandt-Sims, soph., 5-11; P Dillon Sugg, soph., 6-4.
Stepping up: P Chris DeLarosa, sr., 5-11; F Dustin Driver, jr., 6-2; F Julian Garcia, jr., 6-0; G Carson Grater, jr., 5-11; G Brock Kuntz, jr., 5-10.