Wauseon boys basketball has a few experienced players returning that are more than ready to carry on the program’s tradition of success.
“We have many new faces in new roles,” said veteran head coach Chad Burt. “We have won 17 or more games for 9 years in a row and have a group of kids that are eager to compete and establish themselves at the varsity level. We are inexperienced in some key positions, but they are a coachable group and will continue to grow and develop as the season progresses.”
Back to help transition into the 2020-21 season are Connar Penrod (wing), second team All-Northwest Ohio Athletic League and in District 7; Jonas Tester (guard) honorable mention All-NWOAL and District 7; Tyson Britsch (guard); Isaac Wilson (post); Kolton DeGroff (guard) and Easton Delgado (wing).
Penrod returns after averaging 10 and a half points per game and pulling down seven rebounds last season, while Jonas Tester averaged 10.4 points per game.
Newcomers for the Indians this season will be Noah Sauber (wing), Jacob Hageman (guard), Clay Stump (guard), Carson Burt (guard), Krue Powers (wing), Matt Shaw (post), Jude Armstrong (guard) and Landon Hines (post).
“We have a group that is hard-working and athletic overall,” coach Burt said. “They are eager to follow up on the success from previous years and have been competing hard in practice.”
The Indians will have to replace a few key pieces now gone to graduation. Those being Noah Tester, first team all-league/District 7, third team All-Northwest District; Sean Brock, first team District 7, second team all-league, honorable mention All-Northwest District; and Owen King.
Noah Tester and Brock each averaged 13 points and six rebounds a game a season ago.
“We graduated a senior group that made tremendous contributions both on and off the court,” said Burt. “They will be difficult to replace. Team ball-handling will be a point of emphasis and a major concern. We will need to develop our perimeter skills to (be) successful offensively. We lack overall height, so rebounding is a concern.”
Wauseon finished the 2019-20 campaign at 17-7, with a 5-2 mark in NWOAL play. They finished third in the league behind champion Evergreen and runner-up Archbold.
Coach Burt sees his Indians taking second to Archbold in the NWOAL this season. He has Bryan at third, Evergreen fourth, Swanton fifth, Liberty Center sixth, Delta seventh and Patrick Henry eighth.
“Overall, the league will be as balanced and competitive as it has been in a long time with a number of teams capable of winning the league title,” said the Indians’ coach. “Archbold has tremendous athletes and tradition. Bryan has very good talent as well. Evergreen returns key pieces off of their league title. Liberty Center and Swanton both have tremendous individual talent. Delta is extremely well-coached and PH will have renewed excitement with their new coach. Teams will have to be ready night in and night out in the league to make a run at the title.”
Reach Max Householder at 419-335-2010