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Marshfield goes 5-0 to win 2010 WBY Summer Tournament in Prairie du Chien

06/28/2010, 4:37pm CDT
By Mark Miller

Observations from the Wisconsin Basketball Yearbook Summer Tournament held June 26-27 in Prairie du Chien.

Observations from the Wisconsin Basketball Yearbook Summer Tournament held June 26-27 in Prairie du Chien:

Pool A

Most Valuable Player

Cale Zuiker, 6-8, WF, Class of 2011, Marshfield
Zuiker is an intriguing player because of his length, size and skill. His shooting range extends well beyond the three-point arc, and his high release and size make him difficult to defend. Zuiker was able to score facing the basket, but he also posted up in the lane, turned and shot over defenders. Zuiker needs to play with a bit more intensity on the defensive end of the court, and he certainly needs to continue to add weight and strength to his long frame. But his upside once he fills out a bit more and rounds out his overall game is definitely very high. You simply don’t find many 6-foot-8 players who shoot it with as much consistency as Zuiker.

* Marshfield finished 18-6 and shared the Wisconsin Valley Conference title with Wausau West last season. In addition to the return of Zuiker, a first-team all-league pick, coach Craig Michaelis welcomes back several other talented players. Senior point guard Sully Luepke (6-0) played with poise, toughness and intelligence all weekend. Senior wing Ian Padron (6-2) looks to have a huge senior season after missing last year. Padron scored from the perimeter and going to the hoop in Prairie du Chien and finished with a team-high 18 points in the Tigers’ 41-37 victory over Racine Lutheran in the championship game. Junior Elliott Ashbeck (6-3) is a long-distance sniper with size and senior Dustin Thumann (6-5) is a three-year varsity letter winner and one of the Tigers’ top defenders. Senior John Bauer (6-11) did not play in Prairie du Chien, but he also returns, giving Michaelis a potential frontline of the 6-11 Bauer, 6-8 Zuiker and 6-5 Thumann. The Wisconsin Valley Conference figures to be highly competitive in 2010-11 with Marshfield, Wisconsin Rapids, Wausau West and Merrill also fielding teams capable of winning the league title.

* Onalaska was impressive throughout the weekend and figures to be a top five team in the state in Division 2 as coach Craig Kowal returns a seasoned, extremely talented lineup led by 6-8 junior Nick Arenz. Arenz had a very productive game in the Hilltoppers’ 51-49 overtime loss to Marshfield, scoring 11 points and using his size, strength and skill to score, rebound and defend in the lane. Sophomore Matt Thomas has grown several inches over the past few months and is now close to 6-1. He is a remarkable shooter from downtown and is also good off the bounce, either scoring on mid-range jump shots or finding open teammates. Thomas’ older brother, 6-4 senior Tony Thomas, was also productive for Onalaska, using his determination and hustle to crash the boards and slash to the basket. Onalaska has a couple of highly anticipated confrontations with La Crosse Aquinas in the Mississippi Valley Conference coming up next season and is definitely a legitimate threat to win the WIAA Division 2 title next March.

* Milwaukee Bay View may not have the overall talent of Milwaukee City Conference rivals Milwaukee Hamilton, Milwaukee Washington or Milwaukee Vincent, but the Redcats could finish in the upper-half of the rugged conference next season behind a high-energy pressing defense that created havoc for its opponents in Prairie du Chien. Coach Tyler Podall boasts a senior-dominated lineup led by ultra quick point guard Carrington Harris (5-10), versatile wing forward Shawn Kidd (6-2) and bruising senior forward Brain Granberry (6-4). Harris was near impossible to stay with defensively because of his superior quickness, and he was able to score with floaters in the lane. Kidd used his physical strength and quickness to get to the hoop and finish, while Granberry was a load for defenders to deal with on the blocks.

* Chippewa Falls junior Tyson Kalien (6-1) knocked down 10 three-point shots in four games for the Cardinals. He has very deep shooting range and ws also able to get into the lane off the dribble.

* Blair-Taylor played shorthanded as returning senior starters Isaiah Paulson (6-3) and Lucas Howe (6-2) were unable to attend due to prior commitments. Meanwhile, senior Hank Kujak (6-2) missed Saturday’s games while attending a football camp, but he played exceptionally well against Bay View on Sunday. Kujak showed the ability to handle the ball and make great decisions against the Redcats’ pressure defense. Kujak’s younger brother, junior Reggie Kujak (6-6), also played well and should anchor the frontline for a Blair-Taylor team many expect to challenge for the WIAA Division 4 state title in 2010-11.

Pool A Standings
Marshfield 4-0, Onalaska 3-1, Milwaukee Bay View 2-2, Chippewa Falls 1-3, Blair-Taylor 0-4.

Title Game
Marshfield defeated Pool B champion Racine Lutheran

Pool B

Most Valuable Player

Dylan Graf, 6-4, F, Class of 2011, Racine Lutheran

Graf was sensational all weekend for Racine Lutheran, which went 4-0 in pool play and then led Marshfield for three-quarters of the game before running out of gas and falling, 41-37, in the title game. Graf was able to use his size, strength and aggressiveness to score around the basket and on mid-range jump shots. His ability to dominate at times on the glass will be huge for a Racine Lutheran squad expected to contend for the WIAA Division 4 state crown next season.

* Racine Lutheran played with toughness, intelligence and energy all weekend in beating Prairie du Chien, Luck, Fall Creek and Fennimore before falling to Marshfield. Coach Jeff Christensen has a roster loaded with depth, skill and athleticism, traits that figure to serve the Crusaders well as they move into the revamped nine-team Midwest Classic South Division in 2010-11. Junior point guard Peter Drummond (5-11) ran the team like an experienced veteran and rarely turned the ball over. Junior wing Ty DeMuth (6-2) continues to get better and better and was the No. 2 scoring threat for the Crusaders all weekend behind Graf. Senior Corbin Howell (6-1) is a defensive stopper who has improved offensively. Juniors Neko Graf (6-0) and Tyler Naegeli (6-0), along with sophomore Clay Stevens (6-2), also played well for Racine Lutheran.

* Prairie du Chien went 4-1 on the weekend, topping Pool C champion Seneca in overtime in the playoffs after losing to Racine Lutheran in pool play. Coach Andy Banasik lost several starters from last year’s club that shared the Southwest Wisconsin Conference title with River Valley, but the Blackhawks figure to again rank among the top teams in the league behind the return of seniors Tanner Roach (6-3) and Cody Key (6-3), along with junior Connor Morovits (6-0). Roach is a versatile player with good athleticism while Key gives Prairie du Chien a physical presence in the lane. Morovits can play either backcourt position and can absolutely light it up from three-point range.

* Luck went 2-2 on the weekend and got some strong play senior twins Cole and Alec Mortel. The 6-4 forwards scored well throughout the tournament with Cole averaging 12.3 ppg and Alec chipping in 7.8 ppg. Both brothers were comfortable handling the ball and facing the basket, and both made shots from beyond the arc.

* Few teams in Wisconsin lost as much to graduation as Fall Creek, which must replace a very talented senior class that included Jordan Reetz, Luke Tweed, Cullen Haldeman, Andy Kragness and Matt Dickinsen. Coach Rick Storlie will work with a new cast of players in 2010-11, but there is definitely some talent in the program. Senior Jeremy Burns (5-10) and junior Brandon Mielnik (5-11) form a dynamic backcourt with both players capable of scoring from the perimeter and off the dribble. Sophomore Kyle Nelson (6-4) also shows plenty of promise for the Crickets.

* Fennimore played with a very, very young lineup and competed hard, but the Golden Eagles figure to be in store for a rebuilding season as coach Scott Plondke must replace his entire starting lineup. Plondke said senior forward Alex Evans (6-6), who recently gave a verbal commitment to play at NCAA Division II Upper Iowa, is likely lost for the season due to several athletic-code violations.

Pool B Standings
Racine Lutheran 4-0, Prairie du Chien 3-1, Luck 2-2, Fall Creek 1-3, Fennimore 0-4.
Title Games
Racine Lutheran lost to Pool A champion Marshfield
Prairie du Chien beat Pool C champion Seneca in overtime

Pool C

Most Valuable Player

Trenton Payne, 6-1, WF, Class of 2012, Seneca

Seneca has an outstanding group of players returning from a club that went 15-8 a year ago. Payne is definitely one of those players. The physically and mentally strong wing player knocked down shots from the outside and also scored in the lane while leading Seneca to a 4-0 record in pool play. Payne scored 16 points and hit a huge three-point shot late in the game in Seneca’s 35-33 overtime victory over Marshfield Columbus Catholic in pool play.

* Seneca figures to be among a handful of outstanding teams in the Ridge & Valley Conference in 2010-11. Coach Dave Boland will rely heavily on the leadership and playmaking ability of senior Dylan Lessard, a 6-0 point guard who set up his teammates all weekend and is also a more-than-capable scorer himself. Junior Etham Grimsled (6-5) gives Seneca a bruising inside force as he used his superior physical strength to continually score in the lane. Payne and senior Justin Redman (6-1) provide Seneca with two additional scoring threats.

* Columbus Catholic went down to the wire in most of its games and the Dons were able to pull out victories in three of four outings. Coach Joe Konieczny led Columbus Catholic to the title in the Eastern Division of the Cloverbelt Conference, but he must replace three all-league players. Seniors Jared Boyle (5-11), Travis Pischel (5-9) and Paul Selz (5-11) saw considerable action last year and form a solid nucleus along with juniors Mike Iwanski (6-2), Brandon Nikolai (5-9) and Tyler Derfus (5-10).

* River Ridge got a tournament-high 36 points from senior Weston Nemitz (6-2) in a 63-51 victory over Palmyra-Eagle on Saturday. Nemitz, a three-year varsity starter for the Timberwolves, nailed six three-point shots in the game. Nemitz scored well all weekend for River Ridge, went went 2-2 in pool play. Senior Nate Taylor (6-1) also played well for River Ridge, which boasts a deep and balanced roster and figures to use full-court pressure defense to its advantage in 2010-11.

* Cassville went 1-3 in pool play and was led by seniors Cory Tanaka (6-0) and Isaiah Okey (5-9). Tanaka showed the ability to score from the perimeter and off of pull-up mid-range jump shots while Okey used his quickness to get to the basket.

* Palmyra-Eagle won just one game last season and went 0-4 in pool play, but the Panthers are definitely headed in the right direction under coach Matt McGraw. Seniors Kevin McGivern (5-10) and Dan Meyer (6-4) form a solid inside-outside scoring threat for Palmyra-Eagle, which was missing several of its key players. With McGivern and Meyer leading the way, Palmyra-Eagle figures to be much improved in 2010-11.

Pool C Standings
Seneca 4-0, Marshfield Columbus Catholic 3-1, River Ridge 2-2, Cassville 1-3, Palmyra-Eagle 0-4.
Title Game
Prairie du Chien beat Seneca in overtime

Tag(s): Summer Tournaments