Lake Forest boys basketball preview

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Coach Phil LaScala

During his tenure as Lake Forest coach, LaScala’s teams have always had good shooters. But the Scouts have developed post players the past few years. One, Sam Downey, is now a freshman at Yale, and another, junior Evan Boudreaux, has received multiple Division I offers. This inside presence — to go along with an array of shooters — makes LaScala’s teams as versatile as any in the NSC.

“We like to push the ball up the court, but some of our strengths are inside,” LaScala said. “We want to get the ball inside, get good shots. That’s our bread and butter.”

Forward Evan Boudreaux

Although Lake Forest will be playing several first-year varsity players, the Scouts have a player to build around in Boudreaux. A 6-foot-7 forward with excellent 3-point range, Boudreaux has received two Big Ten scholarship offers (Iowa and Northwestern).

“He’s a more well-rounded player. It’s fun to watch him grow up and get more skills and confidence in doing different things,” LaScala said.

Without Downey this year, there will be more space on the blocks for Boudreaux to roam. With teams focusing on him, he will need to recognize double teams and get the ball to teammates for open looks. “He’s become a much better passer out of the post and on the perimeter,” LaScala said.

Guard Cal Miller

A rotational player in the Scouts’ senior-heavy lineup last year, Miller will take on more of a scoring load this season. Miller was a thin 6-4 as a junior, but he has gotten stronger and added extra muscle that he will need against aggressive defenders.

“He’s improved his shot a lot, using his body a lot better,” LaScala said.

Miller injured his knee this summer but is now practicing with the team and isn’t expected to miss any games.

We’ve had some close games with them. Their sophomore team [last season] was the best I’ve ever seen. They are big. You add those guys and Cal [Miller] and Evan [Boudreaux], and they are going to be tough.

2012-13 record: 20-8 overall, 6-6 NSC Lake

2013 playoffs: Lost a Class 4A regional final to Mundelein

Head coach: Phil LaScala, ninth season

Projected starting five: jr. G Jack Traynor, sr. G Ryan Bender, sr. G Cal Miller, jr. F Adam Wolf, jr. F Evan Boudreaux.

Game to watch: Warren at Lake Forest, 7 p.m. Jan. 7. This game begins a long stretch of conference games for the Scouts.

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