Cyclone boys battle through inexperience to secure District win
By Micah Knebel

The boys’ basketball team closed out their season in the second round of districts. They defeated Oelwein, a team they had lost to just a month earlier, to advance to the second round. In the second round, they suffered a narrow five-point loss against #16 Beckman Catholic to close out the season.

The Cyclones ended their season 10-14 and 3-5 in their conference. In addition to their win against the Huskies, the Cyclones’ wins came against East Marshall, Columbus, and AGWSR early in the season. After winter break, they claimed wins from Ankeny Christian, Vinton-Shellsburg, Dike-New Hartford, Sumner-Fredericksburg, and Union. They also claimed another win against Columbus.

The team had six seniors: Clayton Liddle, Kasey Wirtjes, Ethan Schoville, Chase Baumgartner, Mason Kolsrud, and Austin Place.
Baumgartner started one game this season but had playing time in 18 of the team’s games. During that time, he had 13 rebounds, four blocks, and two assists.

Kolsrud played in 17 games and was a starter in one. He scored 10 points during that time and had 29 rebounds, five assists, and two steals.

Place scored three points in his one game he played this season.

Liddle and Wirtjes were starters for the Cyclones for the first time this season, though both had been able to build up their varsity level experience in their junior year with more extensive gameplay. For Schoville, this season marked his second year as a starter. He closed out the season with 77 rebounds, 41 assists, 23 steals, six blocks, and 148 points.

Liddle led the team in scoring with 333 and stood as one of the top three-point scorers for 2A with 74. Sophomore starter Talan Lafrentz was the second highest scorer with 243, followed by Kasey Wirtjes with 225 and junior Keaton Rothmeyer at 208.

Wirtjes and Lafrentz each had 127 rebounds of the team’s overall 736.

Lafrentz also led the team in assists (67) and steals (44).
North Iowa Cedar Leagues All-Conference awards went to Liddle (1st Team), Lafrentz (2nd Team), and Wirtjes (Honorable Mention).
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