2019-2020 Season Preview
The Rebels are under new leadership this season.
Head coach Vince Valez comes over after leading
Abraham Lincoln for the past 16 years. Valez will
have senior guard Deshon Carter to lead a team that
returns seven players who played at least 14 games
last season. It was a down year for Denver South,
which fi nished 7-16 overall and 2-7 in the Denver
The Rebels had three seniors last year: Freedom
Fletcher (7.2 PPG, 4.4 RPG), Joshua Singleton (4.9
PPG) and Jamir Todd (4.9 PPG, 4.4 RPG). Carter
averaged 16.6 points a game last season, tops on
the team. Valez will have some size underneath
this year in 6-7 senior Turumbil Zaki, who averaged
5.4 points and 4.5 rebounds in 14 games last year.
Denver South will have an uphill climb in the highlycompetitive
Denver Prep League.
Mike Brookhart is in his fourth year as Cowboys head
coach and he’s looking to improve on last year’s
3-20 fi nish. Denver West fi nished winless in nine
games in the 5A/4A Denver Prep League, and as a
smaller school it has been a struggle going against
the bigger programs in the league. “We have not had
a ton of success in wins and losses,” Brookhart said.
“We do have a lot of kids with signifi cant varsity
times the last year.”
This season will feature seniors that started playing
for the Cowboys when Brookhart took over and the
hope is the experience gained over those years —
both through wins and losses — will help them be
more competitive this season.
The Warriors relied on a senior-laden team to reach
the Class 3A state tournament last season but there
are a lot of returners who got quality playing time.
Far Northeast loses its top three scorers from 2018-
19 in Myron Hamilton, who averaged 15 points a
game, and Dachaun Davis Jr. (14.2 PPG), and Tylon
Page (10.1 PPG). Last year’s team was 15-9 overall
and fi nished fourth in the Denver Prep League at 6-3.
12 | 201920 DENVER HIGH SCHOOLS BASKETBALL YEARBOOK
No returning player averaged more than 4.7 points a
game, so the Warriors need to fi nd more sources of
offense. Senior Zuri Bryant and junior Gianno Flores
saw the most action on last year’s team, both playing
in all 24 games. Senior Jordyn Matte and sophomore
Isaiah Poindexter also saw playing time last season.
The Patriots did well in the 5A/4A Denver Prep
league in 2019, fi nishing 7-2 — but a tough nonleague
schedule left them with an overall record
of 11-13. George Washington reached the Class 5A
Tournament before falling to Boulder in the fi rst
round. The Patriots had a strong inside presence
last year with 6-7 Blake Whitelaw and 6-8 Malik
Patton. They graduated, but 6-6 Freddie Edmonds III
can help fi ll that void.
The good news for head coach Reginald Hammons
Jr. is there is a strong group of juniors in forwards
Eddie McPhee and Kendale Johnson, and guards
Darrian Hammons and Jarmell Johnson. Kendale
Johnson led the team in scoring last year at 18.8
points per game but no other returner averaged
more than 6.9 points. George Washington has only
two seniors, Kingbed Ageymang and Ramy Marajan,
on a young but experienced team.
JOHN F. KENNEDY
It will be a relatively inexperienced roster for fi rstyear
head coach Terry Balous. The Commanders
had six seniors with signifi cant playing time on last
year’s 10-14 team that fi nished 3-6 and sixth in the
Denver Prep League.
The good news is Kennedy is returning its leading
scorer from a team that reached the Class 4A state
tournament before bowing out in the fi rst round.
Ezekial Estrada averaged 16.3 points per game as
a junior last season, but only he and fellow seniors
Albert Ursetta and Jordan Bennett saw consistent
action last season. Ursetta and Bennett weren’t big
scorers but should get more offensive opportunities
in 2019-20. Balous will rely on players moving up
from the junior varsity roster to help compete in the
Commanders’ tough league.