Pretty much, two different boys basketball teams will exist for the Madison Warhawks this season.
There is the current squad that will play without four or five of its top players for the first few games. Two are injured and three others are members of the school’s varsity football team, which is still involved in the state playoffs.
When those players become available, they likely will quickly be incorporated into the Warhawks’ young lineup, according to Madison head coach Kevin Roller.
Madison opened its 2023-24 season with a home game the night of Nov. 28 against the Seton School Conquistadors of Manassas. The private-school team won, 75-45, and shot well, making 11 three-point baskets.
Madison dressed just eight players for the contest. None of the players on the Warhawks’ current roster, and those to be added later received much varsity playing time last season. Two players who would have been returning starters transferred to private schools.
Against Seton, the Warhawks never led, falling behind 19-12 in the first quarter. They pulled within 26-25 in the second on a layup by junior center Michael Dinkelacker off an assist from junior forward Mason Burger with 4:50 left in the first half.
From there, Seton took control, outscoring Madison, 17-1, the remainder of the half to lead 43-26 at halftime. The scoring run reached 30-1 at one point in the third period, as the Warhawks missed their first 12 shots of the quarter.
“It was 26-25 and we were right there,” Roller said. “We competed hard, but Seton executed very well and shot well.”
Of Madison’s eight players that were dressed, just one was a senior – guard Sumay Frueh. He scored a team-high 11 points.
“Sumay played hard and we moved him around so he could get more shots,” Roller said.
Dinkelacker scored nine points and had as many rebounds for Madison. Junior guard Hobbes Fiel had 10 points and made two threes. Burger’s six points came on two threes. Junior forward Ryan Furlong had three points and four rebounds, freshman guard Tristan Franklin had four points off the bench and junior guard Kyle Tyrrell had two points and two rebounds.
Madison shot 34 percent and made four three-pointers.
Roller said Madison’s season will be a work in progress.
In its next two games, Madison lost to Edison, 45-38, and beat Riverside, 61-47, in the Red Jenkins Tipoff Classic.
Against Edison, Dinkelacher had a double-double with 11 points and 14 rebounds, Fiel made four-three pointers and Furlong had six points and 10 boards. Burger made two threes.
In the win over Riverside, Dinkelacher and Furlong scored 12 each. The Warhawks led 34-15 at halftime.