ALLEN - After months of hard work, the Wesley Christian High School Circuit Riders are set to open the 2012-13 season. The Riders will travel to Oak Hill Academy (Mouth of Wilson, Va.) for a season-opener on Saturday at 1 p.m.
Wesley Christian finished the 2011-12 season as the runner-up in the Kentucky Christian Athletic Association All ‘A’ state tournament. The Riders also claimed a KCAA Region 4 regular-season championship.
The Riders return two seniors - 6-7 Stephen Goble and point guard Tyler Mosley. Goble is coming off a season in which he averaged 15 points and 11 rebounds per game. He also earned a spot in the KCAA All-Star game at the end of the 2011-2012 season.
According to Wesley Christian Coach Jack Jarrell, Mosley is the senior leader that every team needs to be successful. The senior point guard will be expected to lead his team, both offensively and defensively.
According to Jarrell, Wesley Christian also has plenty of talented players to go along with the two seniors.
“We have a great group of juniors in 6-4 Thomas Hall, 5-11 Colton Caldwell and 6-4 Dishawn Thompson,” Jarrell stated. “Thomas is long and athletic, Caldwell is probably our best defensive player and Thompson is a big strong athletic kid who sees the floor great and attacks the glass very strong.”
Thompson has also been on the watch list for several NCAA D1 programs, according to Jarrell. The rest of the Wesley Christian roster is made up of sophomores Devin Kendrick and Blake Turner along with a freshmen class that includes Zack Clark, Jesse Osborne, Shane Salyers, Jacob Montgomery and Ethan Caudill.
“We have a solid group of youngsters that are going to come in right away and contribute,” Jarrell added.
Wesley Christian’s 2012-13 schedule will allow the team to play in Kentucky, Virginia, West Virginia and Tennessee. The Riders will also continue to compete in the Kentucky Christian Athletic Association. Wesley Christian will be participating in the Breaks Interstate Park tournament at Haysi High School. The Riders will also compete in the St. Joseph Invitational, which will be played in the Big Sandy Superstore Arena in Huntington, W.Va.
Other tournaments and one-day events on the Wesley Christain schedule include the Knoxville Catholic Christmas Tournament, The Sportsmen for Christ Tournaemnt, the Ironton Classic, the Hatfield-McCoy Shootout and the Coalfields Shootout.
“This is a very challenging schedule for our team,” Jarrell stated. “We could possibly face Oak Hill Academy (Red) three times this season as well as national power Mt. Zion (North Carolina).
The Riders will face Portsmouth Notre Dame, a team which went 19-3 last season, in the Ironton Classic. Tolsia, who was a state semifinalist in the West Virginia Class AA state tournament last season, will serve as Wesley Christian’s opponent in the Coalfields Shootout.
The Riders are poised to resume playing their home games in the JW Kinzer Gymnasium located on the Wesley Christian campus in Allen.