Great season
for Blue Prep
Coach DeFeo moving on
The Woodstock Academy Blue prep basketball team finished up its season March 3 with a Power 5 Conference AA tournament championship after an 88-72 win over Redemption Christian Academy.
Unlike the Centaurs Gold squad, there is no national championship tournament for the Blue team which meant the Power 5 title was the overall goal.
“We wanted to win this championship. That’s what we’ve been here for since Day 1 in August. Coming up short? What’s the point? You have to take it home,” said Woodstock Academy swing player Carson Meier.
Dyson Frank led the way with 22 points for Woodstock Academy while Jeff Planutis tossed in 18.
The win gave the Centaurs a 30-8 final record.
“That’s great for the kids,” said Blue coach Nick DeFeo. “We had 22 (wins) last year including the playoffs. I’ve always been told that 20-win teams are very good teams, but 30 is rare. These guys will go down as the first Blue team in Woodstock Academy history to win 30 games. That’s special.”
 “I can’t believe it’s over,” Meier said. “It seems like such a long time that we’ve been here but coming into the last three days, it just flew by. It’s so surreal. Some of us don’t even want to go home at this point because of the friends you make and the bonds you grow, and how we have competed together all season. We made friendships that will last a lifetime.”
But the break up took place quickly.
Many have already left Woodstock Academy.
“It’s weird,” DeFeo said. “We prep all year for (last) weekend and a championship to win. These guys came together and played hard, played for each other and then come Monday, guys are flying home. It’s a little weird, but it’s been a great year and, hopefully, we can get these guys where they want to go next year.”
Meier was scheduled to leave for home, Shawnee, Okla., March 4.
“I miss my family so much. My Dad’s up here this weekend and is helping me move out. I’m just ready to see my whole family and my friends back home,” Meier said.
Most of the Blue players will leave with a plan as to where they are headed in the fall; a couple remain undecided, according to DeFeo.
Meier will next head to Kent State University where he has been offered a walk-on spot. He will study fashion design while there.
“I’m very excited,” Meier said. “But it was great to come here. I’ve matured so much in my time here and I think my teammates have as well. I couldn’t have matured this much without them. They pushed me and are great people which pushed me to be a better person.”
The players are not the only ones departing Woodstock Academy.
DeFeo is also leaving the school at the end of the school year after two years with the Centaurs.
He is headed to Notre Dame-West Haven High School to start a program similar to that of Woodstock Academy.
“This place has been really special for me,” DeFeo said. “To come here with coach (Tony) Bergeron and build this up with him has been special. The type of kids that we have brought in, the entire group, not just the top level, and who is going to college. We’re still in touch with the kids from last year and we will be in touch with these kids forever really. We still have our group chats. It’s been a great time, I’ve loved it here, but time to move on, time to run my own program and I’m excited to do that.”   
Prior to the championship game March 3, the Centaurs matched up with Capital Prep Harbor for the second time in four days in the Power 5 Conference AA tournament semifinals.
The Centaurs rolled past the Sharks, 102-46, March 2.
Saddiq Canty led five Centaurs  in double figures with 15, Frank added 14.
The Centaurs also played their final regular season game against the Sharks Feb. 27 and were certainly in a groove.
How else to explain a first-half performance that saw the Centaurs drop 83 points on Capital Prep Harbor at the Alumni Fieldhouse.
“It was really good,” Frank said. “I’m kind of bummed that we didn’t double it and get 160.”
The Centaurs instead won by 69 points, 131-62.
“It feels really good especially to go undefeated (in the regular season) in our conference. Now, all we have to do is get a championship,” Frank said after the game on Wednesday. “It means a lot to me. I haven’t won a state championship so if we get this, it would be my first and I’m super-excited.”
Frank hails from Philadelphia where championships don’t come easy.
“It’s the city. Everyone is really tough out there,” Frank said.
The Blue team was pretty tough on Wednesday.
It rained down 14 3-pointers in the first half alone on the Harbor Sharks from Bridgeport.
Frank had two of those as did Ahmad Jeffries, Jahden Erold, Kruno Macner and Canty.
Three players were already on double figures by the half.
“I’ve never been on a team that scored that many points in a half, but I’ve been on a team that won a game, 75-2,” Frank said with a laugh.
The Harbor Sharks, for their part, did put 35 points down in the first half.
The Centaurs cleared the century mark with 13:26 left in the game on one of their many dunks, this one coming from Guillem Gonzalez which brought a large smile to the face of the native of Spain.
Macner finished with five 3-pointers and led the Centaurs with 25 points.
In addition to Planutis’ 16 points, Gonzalez and Frank finished with 15 and Canty put down 12 points.
Frank said the decision to come to Woodstock Academy was a smart move for him.
“It’s been great. Really good. It’s fantastic. People have been very welcoming,” Frank said.
Marc Allard
Sports Information Director
The Woodstock Academy


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