Crestwood boys almost start anew under Wilson


The Crestwood High School boys basketball program is pretty much undergoing a complete makeover this season.

Gone are nine seniors from last year's 17-8 team as well as the school's only head coach in Dwayne Edwards.

Replacing Edwards is longtime girls head coach Tony Wilson, and not only is he taking a team that lost the nine seniors, his starting lineup has three newcomers to the program.

It goes without saying that bringing his roster together is goal No. 1 for Wilson at the start of the sea-son.

"I feel pretty good about things even though we've started off kind of slow," said Wilson, who had been the girls head coach for 11 years before deciding to move on to the boys. "We're just trying to put the team together right now and develop some chemistry."

The Knights are off to a 0-3 start, but had a difficult opening schedule last week. They lost to defending 4A state champion Lowe Richland, Lee Central, the fifth-ranked 2A team in the state in the South Caro-lina Basketball Coaches Association, and Sumter, the No. 5 5A team.

"I liked the way we played against Sumter," Wilson said of the 53-40 loss. "We started to come togeth-er a bit more even though we still have to improve."

Nazir Andino, who transferred from Laurence Manning Academy, is running the point. The shooting guard is Anthony Bradley, who is joining the basketball team from the football team.

The two starting forwards are transfers from Sumter High, Kwaleek Jones and Jared Washington. The center is 6-foot-2-inch senior Nyjel Lindsay, the only starter who isn't a junior.

"We're obviously not that big compared to some of these teams," Wilson said. "What we do have is a lot of quickness and a lot of athletic players. We're going to have to find a way to take advantage of that. We're going to have to play together as a team.

Wilson plans to use his bench liberally as he brings the team together. Players who will be seeing time off the bench are seniors Carl Benjamin, Jamal Walton and Jabarius Bradley, 6-4 junior Jaquell Chat-man, junior Zabian Yates, freshman Javien Lowery Isaac and junior Tylik Logan.

Wilson, who has guided the Crestwood girls to seven straight region titles, hopes the non-region schedule will pay benefits.

"We're hoping that when region (VI) play rolls around that we will start playing some of our best ball," Wilson said. "I'm hoping we'll start developing our chemistry."