Wednesday, May 22

    2023-24 Boys Basketball Preview: Crestwood Red Devils

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    Crestwood opens the 2023-2024 season with a much more experienced team than the one that won just five games last winter.

    The Red Devils return four All-Chagrin Valley Conference performers and several others with varsity experience, leaving 22nd-year head coach Josh Jakacki confident his squad will be vastly improved this year.

    “We return a veteran team that checked a lot of boxes this summer,” Jakacki said. “We must take care of things we can control. They work very hard, remain coachable, and want to see success collectively. They love being around one another and sharing in each other’s success.”

    Junior guard Dekota Johnson returns after earning first-team All-CVC and special mention All-Ohio honors as a sophomore when he scored 21.4 points with 3.1 assists and 1.8 steals per game.

    “Dekota had an excellent sophomore year and has worked hard on his game this offseason,” Jakacki said. “We are excited to see what does in his junior year. We feel he has a chance to be one of the better guards in Northeast Ohio.”

    Senior Charlie Schweickert earned second-team All-CVC honors last season after draining 77 3-pointers and shooting 41 percent from the floor.

    “Really improved his ball skills,” Jakacki said of Schweickert. “(He) demonstrated last year he can connect from deep. (He is) one of the league’s better long-distance shooters. (He is) poised for a big year.”

    Senior guard Ty Fannin and senior forward Jimmy Peters both were named honorable mention All-CVC last season.

    Fannin scored 3.1 points with 1.2 assists and 1.3 steals per game last season.

    “Ty is a quick guard who has steadily improved over the last few years. He thrives on the defensive end and plays hard,” Jakacki said. “(Peters) is very physical and plays hard. (He is) improving daily, (and his) confidence is growing and will be a solid contributor on the block for us.”

    Juniors Augie Schweickert and James Durham and freshman Brody Durham provide the Red Devils with depth at the guard position.

    “Augie came on strong at the end of the season and showed he was one of our better players. He is primed for a nice junior campaign,” Jakacki said. “(Durham) has improved a lot, (is) playing with confidence, and has quickened his release. (He has a) long, wiry frame that leads to a lot of deflections. (Durham is a) freshman who is very talented and is expected to have a big role on the team.”

    Seniors Nate Walker and Josh Delaney, juniors Steven Lincoln and Bryce Geil, and sophomore Jake Eyerman will play forward for Crestwood.

    “(Walker) works hard and is athletic for his size. He competes,” Jakacki said. “(Lincoln) plays hard, wants to do well, (and is) very coachable. (He) has had a really productive summer. “(Giel is) physical and quick, (has) good feet (and) will do well defending players of any size. (Delaney) has shown good improvement and has provided very good leadership. (Eyerman is a) physical forward who has nice strength. (I’m) happy with his growth and development.”

    Last winter, the Red Devils lost nine games by seven points or less and Jakacki hopes his more experienced team can turn those narrow losses into victories this season.

    To do that, they’ll need to come together as a team and share the basketball.

    “Play with pace when we can to create easy scoring opportunities,” Jakacki said of his team’s keys to victory. “Play unselfish and make great decisions with the basketball. We have worked hard since the last season and implemented some new schemes we think fit the talent we have.”


    Steve Hare
    Steve Hare
    The creator and publisher of, Hare has covered high school sports in Northeast Ohio since 1997. He began as a correspondent for the Lake County News Herald, where he contributed until 2011, primarily covering high school football and wrestling. In 1999, Hare began writing for, a member of the network of high school and college sports web sites. He focuses on covering Notre Dame football recruiting. was created in 2004 and was a member of the network until 2012. The site's original purpose was to cover Ohio high school football and recruiting news but since has grown to cover all sports and to provide sports information services to high school athletic programs and individual teams. Hare attended Willoughby South High School through the middle of his senior year, then graduated from Berkshire High School in Burton in 1986. He played football, wrestled and was an all-Geauga county baseball player (1986). He lives in Chardon with his wife Paulette and their children.

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