BE boys' basketball team starts season as strong contender

The Bishop England boys’ basketball team began the season with a No. 9 ranking in the South Carolina Basketball Coaches Association’s preseason poll. That means the Bishops also begin the season with a bullseye on their collective backs.

“Obviously, any time you get recognition from the state coaches, that’s a plus,” said Bishop England coach Bryan Grevey, who is in his 13th year with the program, including eight as the head coach. “That’s a plus for the team as well as the school. But I tell them not to get the big head. You earn all this on the court. You have to prove you are worthy of the ranking. You are what you are, but never get caught up in it. It’s what others think about the team.”

The Bishops, because of their ranking, are the obvious favorites to win the Region 8-AAA title despite the loss of all-state selection Brendan McHale, who was the team’s leading scorer and helped the Bishops to a 20-6 record. Plenty of talent returns, however, with four seniors in the starting lineup. The team is so deep that Grevey insists that every player on the roster has the potential to be in the starting five rotation.

“Each team I’ve had has been different,” said Grevey, who should notch his 100th victory this winter. “But this group is enthusiastic and works hard. They give 100 percent all the time, and they all get along. This year’s team is deep and on any given night, anyone can start.”

The team is so deep that Grevey can put a team that relies on height and muscle on the court. Or, he could put a team that relies on speed and hustle. “That gives us some flexibility,” the coach said.

The Bishops competed in the Riptide Classic in mid-November and will focus in on region play in the new year. Grevey said Hanahan should provide the Bishops with the biggest challenge for conference supremacy.

“Peter Smits has done a great job there and he has Hanahan primed to make a serious dent in the region,” Grevey said. “Timberland, year in, year out, has presented a formidable challenge. I think Manning, this year, has the potential to cause problems for a lot of teams.”

The team’s point guard is senior Peyton Doyle. His parents are graduates of the University of Tennessee and, yes, he is named after the Vols’ all-time great quarterback Peyton Manning.

BE quarterback Leo Albano returns for his senior season. Grevey said the three-sport star is no longer a well-kept secret. “He will no longer surprise anyone with his talent and ability,” Grevey said.

The two other senior starters are Louis Griffith and Cole Christy. Sophomore Aidan McCool rounds out the starting lineup.

Top players off the bench include seniors Christian Greavu and John Michel. Freshman Tajon Simmons provides ample support at the post position.”

The Bishops will be busy during the holiday season, competing in the Hoops for Hope tourney that is hosted by Ashley Ridge High School.

Daniel Island Publishing

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