By Chris Parker
Joplin Thomas Jefferson has high expectations this year with many key players returning from last season’s team that finished 19-8 overall.
Leading that group is senior Chase Kellenberger. The veteran point guard is active in every facet of the game coming off a season where he averaged 15.6 points, 3.7 rebounds, 4.9 assists and 3.8 steals per game. He also knocked down 46 three-point shots.
Kellenberger is sitting on 942 points for his career.
Classmates Brock Conklin and Dylan Dean-Heck also return to give the Cavaliers a quality senior group to lean on. Conklin posted averages of 8.2 points, 5.0 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 1.9 steals per game last year. Heck poured in 9.2 points per game as a junior to go with 4.3 rebounds, 1.3 assists and 1.2 steals per game.
Dhruv Gheewala is the final key returning player from last season’s team. The junior shooting guard was second on the team averaging 11.8 points per game along with 4.9 rebounds, 2.5 steals and 3.7 assists per game.
Kelsey Atteberry (junior forward/center), Drew Goodhope (sophomore shooting guard), Elias Rincker (sophomore center), Jay Ball (freshman center) and Tyler Brouhard (freshman shooting guard) are all expected to contribute on varsity.
“We have a solid returning nucleus of players,” Thomas Jefferson head coach Chris Myers said. “(We) must cut down on turnovers and improve team defense. I think we will be competitive. We will have a young bench, but I feel they will develop fast and allow us to compete for a conference and district championship.”
Thomas Jefferson opens the season on Nov. 25 at home against Exeter.