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2007-08 Men's Basketball Preview
After an uncharacteristic 9-15 season in 2006-07, the Elizabethtown College men's basketball team is fully prepared to return to its usual spot near the top of the Commonwealth Conference standings in 2007-08.
The Blue Jays return two full-time starters and a part-time starter from last year's squad, but intend to rely on a core of senior leadership combined with several up-and-coming prospects to challenge for one of four postseason berths in the six-team league.
Head coach Bob Schlosser begins his 18th season on the Elizabethtown bench with 264 career victories, and has a total of eight letterwinners among the 13 players who will suit up when the Blue Jays host Penn State Berks in the season-opening Days Inn East Blue Jay Classic on Friday, Nov. 16 at Thompson Gymnasium.
Offensively, senior guard Mike Schatzmann (Paradise, PA/Pequea Valley) was the team's leading scorer last season at 11.0 points per game, while connecting on 33 three-pointers and sharing the team lead with 3.9 rebounds per contest.
Senior swingman Chad Piersol (Elverson, PA/Owen J. Roberts) started 15 games last season and averaged 9.6 points per contest while hitting 24 three-pointers, and senior forward Bryce Rodgers (Waynesboro, PA/Waynesboro) added 4.7 points and 3.3 rebounds per game while starting exactly half of the Blue Jays' 24 contests.
Sophomore post player Mike Church (Peach Bottom, PA/Solanco) is expected to be a factor in the paint for Elizabethtown, after averaging 4.7 points and 3.0 rebounds in 21 games as a reserve last season.
Junior guard Phil Schaffer (Marmora, NJ/Ocean City) will step into the starting point guard spot after averaging 2.1 points and 1.4 assists per game last year.
Off the bench, sophomore forward Josh Houseal (Landisville, PA/Hempfield) will play a regular role after scoring nine points and grabbing six rebounds in limited action last season. Senior guard Ben Schlosser (Elizabethtown, PA/Lancaster Catholic) and senior forward Nick Kennedy (Wyomissing, PA/Wyomissing) will also see increased minutes this year off the Blue Jay bench.
Also providing depth off the bench are senior forward Jordan Dirago (Wallkill, NY/Wallkill) and a pair of newcomers at guard in junior Matt Stein (Lawrenceville, NJ/Lawrence) and first-year student Keith Fogel (Mifflinburg, PA/Mifflinburg). Fogel scored 1,572 points during his scholastic career and was a three-time All-Conference selection.
Sophomore guard Chris Jones (Airville, PA/Kennard-Dale) and first-year guard Joe Flanagan (Lancaster, PA/Lancaster Mennonite) will also compete for minutes off the bench for the Blue Jays.