The Absegami High School boys basketball team has a large class of seniors that coach Mike Bult feels will be a big part of its season.

The Braves must replace graduated players Jaleel Christmon and Vladimir Shustov (New Jersey Institute of Technology). But a group of six seniors will see significant playing time.

"We have a good group of guys through the program, some returning varsity players," Bult said. "We're just excited for the fact that this year we can go a little bit deeper into the bench."

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Abdul Anderson is the top returning starter.

"We're looking for him to continue to step up with his experience and lead the team," Bult said about the 6-foot-4 guard, who recently committed to Bucknell for football.

Manny Ruiz, the Braves' tallest player at 6-foot-6, returns after missing his junior season with a torn ACL.

Matt Fetske, Justin Borders and Cameron Johnson played varsity minutes last season.

"The experience that they bring will be extremely helpful, and leadership-wise they've just been bringing it every day at practice," Bult said. "I'm so proud of these seniors stepping up and leading the way."

Vinnie Nelson got a lot of playing time as a freshman last season.

Bult thinks Janir Vega, a 6-foot freshman, will have the opportunity to have an impact.

Contact John Russo:

609-272-7210

Boys

League: Cape-Atlantic League American

Group: South Jersey Group IV

Coach: Mike Bult (34-35, three seasons)

2012-13 record: 11-12

2013-14 prediction: Spoiler - The Braves are loaded with experienced seniors.

Key players: Abdul Anderson Sr., 6-4, F; Manny Ruiz Sr., 6-6, C; Justin Borders Sr., 5-8, G; Matt Fetske Sr., 6-3, G; Cameron Johnson Sr., 6-1, F; Rob Dowe Sr., 6-0, F; Vinnie Nelson So., 5-8, G; Stephen Ferebee So., 6-4, F; Janir Vega Fr., 6-0, G.

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