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BOYS BASKETBALL Young Trojans gained valuable experience this season

March 14, 2012

The young Wauwatosa West boys basketball had a tough season when looking at the numbers.

The Trojans finished with a 2-21 record, including a 2-15 conference record, finishing last in the Woodland Conference Black Division. They finished with a 16-game losing streak, which included 13 in a row in league play.

The only senior on the team was Reggie Cole, who only saw action in six games (1.5 points per game average). The youthful team also consisted of six juniors, two sophomores and four freshmen.

"Despite the high amount of losses, I love the way our guys stayed together and kept working on getting better," first-year coach Chad Stelse said. "They showed great character all season.

"Despite a ton of adversity throughout the year, our guys battled all season and were playing our best ball when it counted at tournament time. We played the regional champ (Wauwatosa East, 44-42) down to the wire and I'm proud of the way our guys ended the season."

The team honors went to junior guard Leon Moore, who earned the Most Dedicated Award, and sophomore Blake Harvey, who earned the Thomas Steiner Award.

The latter is presented annually to the varsity boys basketball player whom his teammates believe best exemplifies the qualities of a varsity basketball player should represent: a great teammate, positive attitude, strong work ethic and positive school citizen.

Harvey, a sophomore, led the team in scoring with 247 points in 22 games, an 11.2 points per game average. Freshman Andre Carroll was second with 216 points (11.4 average) in 19 games.

Two other players played in 19 games - freshman Steffan Brown (7.9) and junior JJ Belknapp (6.7).

Juniors Austin Jones (13 games, 9.7) and Sam Clough (14, 3.4) and freshmen Wil Watkins (21, 5.0) and Jack Krenzien (10, 3.2) all played 10 or more games.

"I am very hopeful that our guys learned from their experience this season," Stelse said. "But success at the varsity level starts in the off-season. We will not be better next year just because we are one year older - it doesn't work that way.

"It's going to take a tremendous amount of dedication from our guys, and I'm confident they will put the work in to get better. Our conference only gets tougher next season," he said.

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