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Elmwood Park Basketball Players Another Year Older, Wiser

The Elmwood Park Crusaders hone their skills during basketball practice Wednesday, Dec. 16.
The Elmwood Park Crusaders hone their skills during basketball practice Wednesday, Dec. 16. Photo Credit: Joshua Jongsma

ELMWOOD PARK, N.J. — Elmwood Park basketball fans can expect a seasoned group of high school athletes to watch this year, their coach said.

The Crusaders boys team returns most of its core from last season and head coach Kevin Tuohey said he hopes to see improvements.

"Eight of our nine players in the rotation returned so we're expecting to make a little noise in the league," Tuohey told Daily Voice.

Seniors Nolan Van Rye, Marcus Picinich, Kristian Todorovski and Brandon Ricketts will help lead the team. Van Rye and Picinich were both named all-conference players in 2014-2015, their coach said.

Kevin Perez, Grant Rodriguez, Justin Lopez and Kadean Dennis also project to see significant minutes, Tuohey said.

Elmwood Park finished 8-18 last year with several close losses, something Tuohey hopes the extra experience can help change this season.

The coach said they will switch defenses frequently and try to get as many easy points as possible.

"We'll play a fast pace to beat teams down the floor and get easy transition baskets," he said.

The Crusaders open the year Friday against Hasbrouck Heights. After playing starters for full games in the preseason, Tuohey said they'll be ready.

"The energy so far with this group has been very positive," he said. "If we continue to work hard each day in practice we'll be ready to go."

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