Mercer Island Islanders boys basketball player Nigel Seda, left, drives to the hoop in a game against the Interlake Saints during the 2018-19 season. Seda will be one of four returners to the starting lineup during the 2019-20 season. Photo courtesy of Patrick Krohn/Patrick Krohn Photography

Mercer Island Islanders boys basketball player Nigel Seda, left, drives to the hoop in a game against the Interlake Saints during the 2018-19 season. Seda will be one of four returners to the starting lineup during the 2019-20 season. Photo courtesy of Patrick Krohn/Patrick Krohn Photography

Islanders prove their mettle at Gonzaga team camp

Mercer Island Islanders boys basketball squad is an experienced group.

The 2019-20 high school basketball season can’t come soon enough for the Mercer Island Islanders boys basketball program.

The Islanders, who will return eight varsity players this winter from last year’s squad, culminated their summer basketball workouts at the Gonzaga team camp, which took place from June 30 through July 3 in Spokane.

Mercer Island head coach Gavin Cree said his team won five of its seven games at the camp against formidable competition from Eastern Washington, Montana and Idaho.

“Team camp is sort of the culmination of summer for us. A lot of times, you don’t have all your players (June tournaments). We had most of our guys healthy and available at Gonzaga. We went 5-2 in the top division. We had some pretty good wins against some solid teams,” Cree said. “Probably our best win came against Ferris. We beat them by 20 or so. It was as signature moment for us.”

Cree said the game plan for the summer is for his players to fine tune their games as much as possible.

“Summer is about getting better. It is nothing that is required to do for anybody on the team the following year, but good programs have great participation,” Cree explained. “It is an opportunity to improve and see where you stand as a player. The kids really put some of the things they’ve been working on into action.”

The Islanders return a bevy of talented players to the roster during the 2019-20 season. Cree said post player David Pickles, who missed summer workouts due to an injury, will be ready to hit the court when practices commence this November. Nigel Seda (guard) and Adam Parker (forward) are two of the Islanders best playmakers.

“Nigel had a really awesome team camp performance. He was really consistent and really attacked on offense,” Cree said of Seda. “Adam Parker is also back and had a great summer. He played in a showcase event at Bellevue College.”

Cree said Nate Wenzel, Luke Wenzel, Tyler Butson, Lukas Varney, Chris Clarke and Alex Arron impressed him with their play throughout the duration of the summer. Clark and Arron are battling for the open point guard starting position vacated by 2019 graduate Will Lee.

“Will (Lee) is a big player to replace and is the only starter we are losing. They are vying for that spot,” Cree said.

The strength of the Islanders basketball program is their sticky man-to-man defense.

“Our calling card continues to be our defense. We’re a really tenacious defensive team. We really caused problems for other teams at camp. It was fun to see. We had some teams who were frustrated with our ball pressure and intensity. We have a lot of guys who can guard the ball,” Cree said.


In consideration of how we voice our opinions in the modern world, we’ve closed comments on our websites. We value the opinions of our readers and we encourage you to keep the conversation going.

Please feel free to share your story tips by emailing editor@mi-reporter.com.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://www.mi-reporter.com/submit-letter/. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) We reserve the right to edit letters, but if you keep yours to 300 words or less, we won’t ask you to shorten it.

[flipp]

More in Sports

WIAA delays start dates for fall sports

Football practices to begin Sept. 5, all other sports planned for Sept. 7.

Ed Pepple (center). File photo
Legendary Mercer Island coach celebrated on sports podcast

On Scorebook Live Today, coach Matt Logie discussed the legacy of his grandfather, Ed Pepple.

Rounding the bases: MIHS Baseball holds caravan for varsity seniors

The season was cut short for Mercer Island High School’s varsity baseball… Continue reading

No-show season: WIAA announces cancellation of spring sports, activities

Due to the school closure extension, the cancellation includes all practices, competitions, tournaments and championships, WIAA says.

There’s still hope for spring sports, WIAA announces

Washington Interscholastic Activities Association making contingency plans for high school sports competitions after extension of stay home order.

The WIAA announced Wednesday that if schools reopen at the conclusion of the six-week statewide shutdown ordered last week by Gov. Jay Inslee, then the state championships will go on as planned. (WIAA photo)
WIAA still hoping to hold state championships in May

But if the school shutdown extends past April 24, those championships could be in jeopardy.

Islanders possess young talent on soccer pitch

The Mercer Island boys soccer team awaits the new season.

Mercer Island wrestlers place at state folkstyle wrestling championships

Four Mercer Island elementary and middle school students placed at the state… Continue reading

Athletic practices and competitions cancelled through April 24 due to coronavirus outbreak

By Andy Nystrom and Benjamin Olson Gov. Jay Inslee announced on March… Continue reading

Games are being postponed in response to coronavirus outbreak

In response to the recent coronavirus outbreak, Eastside schools are taking precautions… Continue reading

Mercer Island Football Club teams net championships

Boys and girls soccer teams from Mercer Island Football Club dominated at… Continue reading

Preparing for the first pitch

The Mercer Island baseball team is going into the new season with a deep pitching staff.