Wauwatosa West struggles with consistency, execution
Carroll earns first team all-conference honor
The Wauwatosa West boys basketball team recently handed out several awards and announced Woodland Conference West Division All-Conference honors.
Coach Chad Stelse and his staff handed out five major awards at their banquet March 6.
Seniors Austin Jones and Leon Moore earned the Thomas Steiner Award.
Senior Nakeem Evans was named the Most Improved Player.
Junior Reggie Cason earned the Most Dedicated Player Award.
Andre Carroll won the Toughness Award.
Adam Polivka won the Respect the Game/Sportsmanship Award.
Carroll earned first-team all-conference honors and Steffan Brown was honorable mention.
Brown tied a school record for assists in game with 14 against Greendale on Dec. 14.
A challenging start
The Trojans finished the season with an overall record of 6-17. They finished fifth of six teams in league play with a 6-11 record.
Tosa West began the year with a 3-game losing streak before winning a season-high four games. From there on it was all downhill as they lost four in a row, won one, then lost a season-high nine straight games before splitting their final two.
"I knew the start of our season schedule would be very challenging," Stelse said. "We had to go to conference champ New Berlin Eisenhower (15-2) to start the season and then back at home against Pewaukee (12-5) and South Milwaukee (10-14). Unfortunately, we lost all three and our guys' confidence was rattled from the start. We did bounce back with a season-high four straight victories."
But a last-minute 69-67 loss at Shorewood on Dec. 21 really hurt the Trojans according to Stelse.
"I feel the Shorewood loss going into Christmas break was really demoralizing to our team," he said. "We were up most of that game in a tough place to play and let a late lead slip away.
"Instead of going into the WBY shootout against two No. 1 seeds on a five-game winning streak and two games over .500, we were back to 4-4 with the toughest part of our schedule ahead of us."
Inconsistency and lack of execution hurt the Trojans at times.
"Despite a string of tough losses, I'm proud of the way our guys battled all season," Stelse said. "We needed to be better playing together on both ends of the court on a consistent basis - and we simply needed to execute better down the stretch of a lot of our ball games."
One of the positives of having such a young team is Stelse has some positive things to look forward to.
"I'm excited about the group of returning players and their eagerness to get better," he said. "This group is hungry for success and I hope they understand exactly how much work it's going to take to contend in a very competitive returning class in Woodland West next season (the entire all-conference 1st team returns)."
Juniors Cason, Blake and Cole Harvey and Jack Coleman and sophomores Carroll, Brown, Jack Krenzien and Will Watkins will return.
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