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Observations from the WBY Tournament at Viterbo June 8-9, 2013

06/15/2013, 9:30am CDT
By Mark Miller

Observations from the WBY Tourney at Viterbo University June 8-9

06/09/2013, 8:45pm CDT
By Mark Miller

Nick Stelzer of Roncalli

Observations from the Wisconsin Basketball Yearbook Summer Tournament held in La Crosse at Viterbo University on June 8-9:

Pools A-B

Final Standings

Pool A – La Crosse Central 4-0, Eau Claire Memorial 2-2, Elk Mound 2-2, West Salem 2-2, Gale-Ettrick-Trempealeau 0-4.  

Pool B – Manitowoc Roncalli 4-0, Menomonie 3-1, River Falls 2-2, Aquinas 1-3, Onalaska 0-4. 

Pool A vs. Pool B Championship Game – Roncalli 51, La Crosse Central 45.

Most Valuable Player 

Nick Stelzer, 6-2, Sr., WG, Roncalli 
A returning second-team all-Olympian Conference selection for the Jets, Stelzer is the younger brother of former Roncalli standout and current Michigan Tech junior Ben Stelzer. Nick Stelzer was outstanding in leading Roncalli to a 5-0 record at Viterbo. He knocked down three-point shots, got to the basket and finished over taller defenders and moved the ball while setting up scoring opportunities for his teammates. A left-handed wing guard with a good first step to the basket, Stelzer has battled foot injuries in the past, but he appears 100 percent healthy at this point he was definitely 100 percent effective for the Jets on both Saturday and Sunday.   

All-Tournament Team (In alphabetical order) 

Jerrad Ambrose, 6-5, Jr., WF, La Crosse Central
Already a two-year varsity performer for Central, Ambrose competed with a high level of intensity and showed the ability to score from the perimeter and in the lane. He is a quick jumper who was able to block and alter some shots while also hauling down a good chunk of rebounds for the Red Raiders.

Zac Doll, 6-4, WG, Sr., Elk Mound
A returning first-team all-league player for an Elk Mound squad that went 23-1 and won the Dunn-St. Croix Conference crown, Doll is an intriguing player because of his length, size and skill. He was able to routinely beat defenders off the bounce and either get to the rim or draw a foul.

Alex Hayden, 6-3, Sr., G/F, La Crosse Central
A clutch, versatile, athletic and mentally tough swing player, Hayden made big shots all weekend for the Red Raiders, who went 20-4 a year ago under coach Todd Fergot and return six key players from that squad. Hayden showed the ability to post-up in the paint, step outside and make mid-range jump shots and bury some big threes while leading the Red Raiders in scoring at the tournament.  

Luke Murphy, 6-2, WG, Sr., River Falls
Murphy is about as quick with his first step to the basket as any other player in Wisconsin and he is relentless in attacking the basket. Opponents started to play off of Murphy a bit and forced him to make some perimeter shots. Becoming a consistent outside-shooting threat will certainly enhance Murphy’s overall effectiveness, but he is nonetheless a handful to guard because of his explosiveness.

Gianni Rossato, 6-7, Jr., PF, Eau Claire Memorial
Rossato competed with a high degree of energy throughout the tournament and showed the ability to score off of post-up moves in the lane and with his effective mid-range jump shot. Rossato often outworked his frontline opponents and was able to score a high rate for the Old Abes. 

Sam Scheer, 5-11, Jr., WG, Roncalli
A knock-down shooter with a quick release, Scheer made 14 three-point shots in five games (2.8 3pg) and also showed the ability to use his quickness and strength to turn the corner and get around defenders on drives to the basket. Scheer is a solid defender who competes with a high basketball I.Q.  

Luke Stanley, 6-4, Sr., WF, Menomonie
One of the more pleasant surprises of the entire tournament, Stanley showed the ability to beat defenders off the dribble and finish above the rim with a dunk while also making some long-distance shots. His combination of skill, size and athleticism are highly impressive and figure to help the Mustangs challenge Rice Lake, Eau Claire Memorial, Eau Claire North and Hudson in the Big Rivers Conference next winter.

Nick Wagner, 6-1, Soph., PG/WG, Gale-Ettrick-Trempealeau
There is a lot to like about Wagner’s game and potential. The son of G-E-T coach Mark Wagner and younger brother of Nebraska walkon Tim Wagner, Nick Wagner is light on his feet, fluid with the ball in his hands and able to make deep jumpers while also zooming past defenders with his quickness and athleticism. Wagner is definitely a player to watch in 2016 in Wisconsin.

Parker Weber, 6-7, Sr., PF, Aquinas
After earning second-team all-Mississippi Valley Conference laurels as a junior while helping Aquinas to a 24-4 record and the WIAA Division 3 state title, Weber takes on a much bigger role for the Blugolds this time around as he is the lone returning starter for coach Rick Schneider. Weber’s ability to seal defenders and score in the lane is tough to stop in a one-on-one situation. His one-handed jumper in the lane proved effective for a young Aquinas squad that went 1-3.

Baily Williams, 6-2, Jr., PG, West Salem
A two-year varsity performer for coach Chad Hayes at West Salem, Williams is a scoring combination guard who can hurt opponents with his perimeter jump shot or with his aggressive moves to the basket. Williams was able to consistently draw contact from defenders and spent a good deal of time at the foul line for the Panthers. Williams is the best player for a young and talented squad at West Salem

Team Champion

The Jets appeared to be in mid-season form in cruising past Aquinas and River Falls on Saturday, and then worked hard for tough victories over Menomonie, Onalaska and La Crosse Central on Sunday. Coach Joe Rux, who has won 222 games in 13 years at the school, has an exceptionally deep team that features a variety of three-point specialists and a bit of size with seniors Shane Johnson (6-4) and Josh Erickson (6-2) playing along the baseline along with promising junior Logan Theisen (6-4). Roncalli won 18 games last season and must replace leading scorer Nate Lassila (19.1 ppg), but the Jets have the look of another title-contending squad in a rugged Olympian Conference that also includes Brillion, Valders and Wrightstown.

Aquinas played the entire weekend without returning seniors Reggie Rabb (6-0) and Sam Scheidt (6-4) and most of the weekend without senior Eldred Jones (6-2), who went down with an injury in the Blugolds’ first game … Aquinas picked up a talented transfer student who moved to La Crosse from Virginia in junior Issac Santana (6-3), who used his quickness, physical size and explosive jumping ability to score around the basket … Menomonie sophomore Nate Stanley (6-4) competed with plenty of poise and skill and appears to have a very bright future for the Mustangs … Juniors Ben Everhart (6-2) and David Schnack (6-6) played well in addition to Rossato for Eau Claire Memorial. The talented junior trio gives coach Greg Van Grunsven a solid nucleus to build around over the next two seasons … Onalaska senior Connor Gavin (6-3) earned honorable mention all-league honors as a junior and is the top returning player for the defending Mississippi Valley Conference champions. Playing with mostly inexperienced teammates, Gavin kept the Hilltoppers within striking distance of most of their games with his ability to score off the dribble … Lanky juniors Brett Thompson (6-5) and Tyus Hoeppner (6-4) displayed plenty of promise for West Salem and figure to become even more effective players as they continue to mature physically … Elk Mound’s Dexter Curry (6-7) and Travis Nelson (6-2) played well for the Mounders in addition to Doll.



Quinn Buchholz of Mondovi

Pools C-D

Final Standings

Pool C – Almond-Bancroft 4-0, Fall Creek 3-1, Hillsboro 2-2, Osceola 1-3, Sparta 0-4.  

Pool D – Blair-Taylor 3-1, Columbus Catholic 3-1, Mondovi 3-1, Westby 1-3, La CrosseCentral JV 0-4. 

Pool C vs. Pool D Championship Game – Blair-Taylor 44, Almond-Bancroft 26.

Most Valuable Player 

Brett Ladsten, 6-1, Jr., PG, Blair-Taylor 
A returning first-team all-league player in the Large Schools Division of the Dairyland Conference, Ladsten set the table for his teammates and then also delivered some scoring of his own as the Wildcats defeated Mondovi and Almond-Bancroft in back-to-back games Sunday after falling to Columbus Catholic earlier in the day. Ladsten has excellent size and vision for a point-guard and was able to consistently deliver excellent feeds to his teammates.

All-Tournament Team (In alphabetical order) 

Cade Anderson, 6-7, Jr., PF, Sparta
Anderson has outstanding length and runs the floor very well. He had trouble finishing at times, but that figures to come with continued skill work and added strength. Anderson is a very intriguing player because of his size and fluid movement.

Matt Anderson, 6-5, Jr., WF, Fall Creek
The best is yet to come from this promising wing prospect from Fall Creek. Anderson is very light on his feet, moves well on both ends of the court and competes with an impressive skill package. As he continues to add weight and strength to his long frame, Anderson’s ability to dominate opponents will increase. Fall Creek coach Rick Storlie will rely heavily on Anderson over the next two seasons.  

Matt Anderson, 6-1, Sr., F, Hillsboro
Anderson does all the dirty work for Hillsboro. He grabs rebounds, makes the extra pass, scores while being fouled and recovers loose balls for the Tigers. Anderson figures to play a key role for a Hillsboro program looking to rebound from an 11-14 season.

Quinn Buchholz, 6-4, Sr., PF, Mondovi
Buchholz played within himself about as well as any other player in the entire WBY Tournament. He took good shots, rebounded at a high level and did an excellent job of making big shots for the Buffaloes. His late-game heroics helped Mondovi edge Columbus Catholic in pool play and kept the Dons out of the title game.

Jared Fleischmann, 5-10, Sr., PG, Columbus Catholic
A first-team all-league pick in the Eastern Division of the Cloverbelt Conference as a junior, Fleischmann does a bit of everything for the Dons. He brings the ball up against full-court pressure, makes some long-distance shots and gets into the lane off the dribble. Fleischmann is a solid point guard who played exceptionally well in the Dons pool-play victory over eventual champion Blair-Taylor.

Evan Pagel, 6-2, Sr., PG, Almond-Bacroft
A second-team all-league pick as a junior in the Central Wisconsin 10 Conference, Pagel handles the ball for Almond-Bancroft and does a superb job of setting up his teammates while also looking for scoring opportunities himself. Pagel has good size and bounce for a point guard.

Jacob Puent, 6-4, Sr., PF, Columbus Catholic
Like Fleischmann, Puent was stellar in the Dons’ win over Blair-Taylor, scoring in the lane off of beautiful feeds from his point-guard teammate. A three-year varsity performer for coach Joey Konieczny, Puent has good footwork and uses the glass with effectiveness in the post.

Dalton Soto, 6-4, Sr., WG, Blair-Taylor
After averaging 15.8 points and 6.9 rebounds per game as a junior, Soto appears primed for a big senior season for veteran coach Randy Storlie, who has won 402 games in 24 years at the school. Soto is capable of scoring in a variety of ways while also becoming a dominant force at times on the glass. Becoming more consistent in all phases of the game is the next step in Soto’s development as a player.

Max Stockwell, 6-3, Soph., F, Hillsboro
A physically mature player already as a sophomore, Stockwell can play either forward spot and was able to score in a variety of ways for the Tigers. The returning first-team all-Scenic Bluffs Conference performer at times overpowered opponents with his strength, aggressiveness and athleticism.

Ethan Yonke, 6-2, Sr., F, Almond-Bancroft
A strong and athletic inside player, Yonke used his speed, jumping ability and skill to beat opponents around the basket. His ability to finish in the post frustrated opponents, who couldn’t match Yonke’s speed and craftiness in the post. The fact Yonke is left handed further helps his ability to finish near the hoop.  

Team Champion

The Wildcats had an uncharacteristic season a year ago, finishing 8-15 overall and 5-8 in the Dairyland Conference. Blair-Taylor, though, appears to have the pieces in place for a winning 2013-14 campaign as Storlie returns four starters in Ladsten, Soto and seniors Simeon Pooler (6-1) and Nolan Kujak (6-4). Pooler is a dynamic scorer who can hurt defenses from several spots on the court while Kujak gives the Wildcats some size in the paint.

Almond-Bancroft sophomore Austin Bunders (6-0) competed with a high degree of confidence and made some big shots for the Eagles … Columbus Catholic senior Derek Green (6-1) displayed plenty of athleticism and quickness for the Dons while also making some shots in wins over Blair-Taylor and Westby on Sunday … Fall Creek senior Dakota Hopkins (6-3) and junior Braden Walbeck (6-0) played well for the Crickets, who lost their entire starting lineup from a squad that went 20-5 and won the Western Cloverbelt championship … Mondovi senior Zach Ganshow (6-0) continues to recover from an ACL injury, though he is expected to return to action a bit later this summer … Osceola played the WBY Tournament a bit short handed as coach Jacob Meyer was without returning senior Trevor Pauley (6-2) and junior Jaared Cutts (6-6). In addition, senior Trevor Carlson (6-3) was a bit limited as he continues to recover from an injury ... Sparta senior Keegan Sullivan (5-10) struggled a bit with his perimeter shot, but he did a solid job of running the offense for the Spartans … Westby qualified for the WIAA State baseball tournament late last week and played a bit short-handed all weekend, though junior Tanner Schmitt (6-2) had some positive moments.


Tag(s): Summer Tournaments