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Norsemen Again Take Home Top Prize

H-BR captures third place



Balance propels Newark to 17th tourney title

Bill Lidinsky, Ottawa Times

SOMONAUK — In order to win championships on the basketball court a team can't be branded as a one-man band.

Despite the unparalleled play of senior Kyle Anderson so far this season, Newark has proven to be much more than just that one-trick pony.

During the Little Ten Conference Tournament championship game Saturday night, the Norsemen showed once again that they are much more accomplished that just a star player and his supporting cast. Newark placed four starters in double figures and used a big run late in the first half to propel itself to a 62-57 victory over second-seeded Indian Creek.

The Norsemen (21-1) got a team-leading 18 points from senior John Avery, along with a double-double from sophomore Brett Anderson, who tallied 14 markers and hauled down a game high 10 rebounds.

Add to that a rather quiet 13 points form Kyle Anderson and 11 more form senior Cameron Berg and you get a second straight LTC tourney championship and its 17th since joining the conference back in 1967.

The Timberwolves (14-9) tried to mount a late rally, trailing the Norsemen by 11 at 59-48 with under a minute to go. But Alex Bremner's trio of 3-pointers during the final 55 seconds of play weren't enough as Newark held on to win by five.

Bremner ended up with a team leading 18 points for Indian Creek.

"Like I've said, we're not a one man or even a two or three-man team," said Newark coach Rick Tollefson. "We've got weapons throughout and that's nice to have. We showed it here again tonight with four guys scoring in double digits."

"Newark has so many players that can hurt you and that showed especially late in the first half when they ballooned their lead from just two points to ten with three or four different kids scoring," said Indian Creek coach Joe Piekarz. "That stretch really started setting them apart going into the second half and we could never really cut their lead down until the end."

The Timberwolves led 11-10 after one quarter, but Newark went on a 24-13 run in the second period, including an 8-0 burst that turned a 26-24 Norsemen lead into a 34-24 bulge at the break. Avery was key with eight points in the second stanza.

"In the second quarter we got our energy level up and I thought we did a good job with our trapping defense and pressure," Avery said. "That gave us a good lift going into the second half."

The Norsemen owned a 45-36 advantage after three quarters before pushing it to their biggest lead of the night at 53-39 after six fourth period tallies from Brett Anderson in the low post.

"I tried to turn it up down low tonight and I played with a lot of intensity that got me more opportunities," Brett Anderson said. "I tried to go as hard as I could tonight both scoring and on the boards and it helped me contribute to another tournament championship."

Indian Creek also got double digit scoring from Seth Sanderson (16 points) and Cal Herrmann (10 points).

Newark 62, Indian Creek 57

INDIAN CREEK (57) — Herrmann 4 1-2 10, Reynolds 0 0-0 0, Drendel 0 0-0 0, Bremner 6 1-1 18, Johnson 2 2-4 6, Fleming 0 0-0 0, Crayton 3 1-1 7, Sanderson 4 8-9 16, Penton-Gaston 0 0-0 0, Creed 0 0-0 0. Totals 19 13-17 57.

NEWARK (62) — J. Anderson 0 1-2 1, K. Anderson 5 3-7 13, Avery 7 4-4 18, Berg 4 0-1 11, Hughes 1 0-0 3, Wright 0 2-2 2, B. Anderson 6 2-4 14. Totals 23 12-20 62.

Indian Creek (14-9) 11 13 12 21 — 57

Newark (21-1) 10 24 11 17 — 62

3-point goals — IC 6 (Bremner 5, Herrmann); Newark 4 (Berg 3, Hughes). Rebounds — IC 25 (Crayton 8); Newark 28 (B. Anderson 10). Turnovers — IC 13; Newark 12. Totals fouls (fouled out) — IC 18 (Herrmann); Newark 16

Royals pull away from L-E for 3rd; host Bobcats take consolation championship

SOMONAUK — Third-seeded Hinckley-Big Rock broke open a tight contest with fifth-seeded Leland-Earlville to come away with a 48-36 win and third place at the 92nd annual Little Ten Conference Tournament.

The Panthers pulled to within four at 39-35 with just over three minutes to play before the Royals went on a 9-1 run to close out the contest.

Dalton Heath paced Leland-Earlville (11-10) with 13 points, while Reed Goodbred and Tyler Becker each chipped in with seven apiece. Heath also hauled down a game high 13 rebounds. H-BR (12-11) got a game high 14 points from Michael Baylor,

"Offensively we just had a tough time today and if you don't score effectively you're not going to win," said Leland-Earlville coach Randy Goodbred. "We had our opportunities and this one hurts because I think we're capable of playing with them which we did, but it would have been nice to get the win."

Consolation championship

Somonauk 46, Serena 39

The sixth-seeded Huskers led 28-21 after three periods of play before the fourth-seeded Bobcats outscored Serena 25-11 in the final quarter.

Jake Grenemeier scored 17 points to lead Somonauk (8-16). Dylan Wesolowski added 10 points.

Aaron Carpenter had 12 points for the Huskers (6-17).

Championship semifinals

Newark 75, Leland-Earlville 37

The eventual tourney champion Norsemen led 24-5 after one quarter and built a 44-12 halftime advantage.

Kyle Anderson scored 27 points to lead Newark. John Avery added 14 points. Brett Anderson chipped in 10 points.

Dalton Heath and Reed Goodbred had 14 and 13 points, respectively, for the Panthers.

Consolation semifinals

Somonauk 72, Kirkland Hiawatha 45

Grenemeier scored 21 points to lead the Bobcats. Wesolowski added 12 points. Jake Morsch chipped in 10 points.

Serena 57, LaMoille-Ohio 37

Jake Berggren scored 14 points to lead the Huskers.


RAREFIED AIR -- Kyle Anderson eclipses 2,000 points as Newark advances past Paw Paw

Bill Lidinsky, Ottawa Times

SOMONAUK — After a three-day delay due to the recent snowstorm, the 92nd annual Little Ten Conference Tournament resumed at Somonauk High School on Friday evening. At the end of the night No. 1 seed Newark owned a 78-54 quarterfinal win over No. 9 Paw Paw, while Norsemen senior standout Kyle Anderson eclipsed a very lofty scoring milestone.

The University of Delaware recruit pumped in 19 points against the Bulldogs, pushing him into a very elite club of players that have reached the 2,000-point plateau.

Anderson, who now stands with 2,005 points, is only the third Times area player to ever achieve the special benchmark, along withBob Guyette of Marquette with 2,009 tallies (1968-71) and Newark's David Olson with 2,123 (1985-88).Anderson is also just the fourth LTC boys player to ever earn the rare achievement, behind Olson, Justin Allen of now defunct Malta (2,435, from 1995-1999) and Norm Hage of Plano (2,002, from 1960-1964).

Strangely enough on his special night, Kyle Anderson's 19 points proved to be only the fourth highest output on the evening. Paw Paw's Brandon Safranek led all scorers with 26 points, while Anderson's senior teammates John Avery and Jeremy Anderson topped the all-stater with 25 and 22 tallies, respectively.

Newark (19-1) now moves into today's LTC tournament semifinal match up at 1 p.m. against Leland-Earlville, while Paw Paw (5-16) falls out of the tourney proceedings.

But in the end, it was Kyle Anderson's night to shine.

"It's a great personal accomplishment for me, but I couldn't have scored all these points without my teammates who have supported me so well over these four seasons of high school basketball," Kyle Anderson said. "I'm blessed and I have a gift from God. I'm trying to use that gift to glorify God and help bring my team and teammates success. Tonight was a special night for me, but more important we advanced in this tournament."

The Norsemen, No. 2 in the most recent Associated Press poll, didn't need their ace early on as Jeremy Anderson and Avery did most of the first-half damage. Jeremy Anderson notched 12 first-quarter points and Avery eight to give Newark a healthy 27-12 lead. They totaled 17 and 11 points, respectively, asthe Norsemen comfortably ahead 41-23 going into the locker room.

Safranek totaled 13 points in each half for Paw Paw, but it wasn't enough to counter Newark's triple threat. The only suspense wasKyle Anderson's mark, which he reached at 1:20 of the third quarter. On a 2-on-1 break, Avery missed before Anderson followed his errant tip try with a rebound and the record-book lay-in.

"If I would have known how many points he had, I would have dished it off to him, but I had no idea," Avery said. "I'm very happy for Kyle and I was happy I could also score so well tonight in a winning effort. It's cool to be part of a great night."

"I told Kyle back in junior high that he'd be the best basketball player ever to come through Newark," said Norsemen coach Rick Tollefson. "He's just a dynamic athlete and a great scorer. It's just a fantastic accomplishment for Kyle and a great honor for him to move into such a rare category."

Newark 78, Paw Paw 54

PAW PAW (54) — Siemers 0 0-0 0, Hensley 1 0-0 3, Jenkins 1 0-0 2, Safranek 10 3-3 26, Marks 3 0-0 9, Wiley 0 0-0 0, Lilja 3 0-0 6, Foster 0 0-0 0, Soto 4 0-0 8, Penman 0 0-0 0. Totals 22 3-3 54.

NEWARK (78) — J. Anderson 9 1-2 22, K. Anderson 8 2-3 19, Avery 11 3-5 25, Berg 2 0-0 6, Hughes 0 0-0 0, Hillard 0 0-0 0, Lehman 0 0-0 0, Kratzer 0 0-0 0, Ramey 1 0-2 2, Wright 0 0-1 0, B. Anderson 2 0-0 4. Totals 33 6-13 78.

Paw Paw (5-16) 12 11 11 20 — 54

Newark (19-1) 27 14 20 17 — 78

3-point goals — Paw Paw 7 (Safranek 3, Marks 3, Hensley); Newark 6 (J. Anderson 3, Berg 2, K. Anderson). Rebounds — Paw Paw 25 (Lilja 7); Newark 38 (Avery 8). Turnovers — Paw Paw 19; Newark 8. Totals fouls (none fouled out) — Paw Paw 13; Newark 7.

 A 1st FOR L-E -- Co-op reaches semis with win over Somonauk

Bill Lidinsky, Ottawa Times

SOMONAUK — It's been a little while coming for the varsity boys basketball co-op of Leland and Earlville high schools.

Since the two towns joined forces in 2007, they have found little success on the hard court, especially during the Little Ten Conference Tournament.

In the 92nd version of the event, the fifth-seeded Leland-Earlville bunch finally advanced into the semifinals Monday evening with a 55-46 victory over fourth-seeded Somonauk.

Junior Reed Goodbred's game-high totals of 20 points and 10 rebounds paced the Panthers as they bolted out to an early 30-18 halftime lead before withstanding a strong second half Somonauk rally.

Goodbred tallied 12 first half scores and added eight down the stretch in the fourth quarter on 6 of 8 free-throw shooting to help secure his team's victory. Leland-Earlville (11-8) now will move on to the tournament semifinals currently scheduled for Thursday at 5:45 p.m. against either top-seeded Newark or ninth-seeded Paw Paw.

Somonauk (6-16) falls to the consolation side of the bracket where it will face No. 8 seed Hiawatha, also on Thursday at 5:45 p.m.

"I'm quite certain this is our fifth year as a co-op and our first year advancing into the semifinals of this tournament so it feels pretty good,' said Leland-Earlville coach Randy Goodbred. "We know we've probably got Newark now in the semis, but we knew we couldn't get there if we didn't win tonight against a tough Somonauk squad on their home court. We knew we had a shot to play with them after we saw the seeds, and we came out strong and hung on at the end."

"This is what happens when you get off to a slow start,"said Somonauk coach Ron Hunt. "You set the tone and the tone we set was lackadaisical one. We didn't execute on offense and we didn't play very good defense in the first half. We made a run that tied the score up a couple of times in the fourth quarter, but we gave too much away early and it ended up costing us. They played harder than we did in the first half and that was the difference tonight."

The Panthers broke out strong early with a 10-0 lead on 5-of-6 shooting as Reed Goodbred tallied two baskets. He'd add four more buckets before halftime as Leland-Earlville went up 30-18 at the intermission.

"It was mainly team play for us in the first half, and I credit my teammates for really getting after it," Reed Goodbred said. "Tyler Becker and Tyler Frieders did a great job getting me the ball and we had a nice leads at halftime."

Somonauk stormed back to within 39-35 after three quarters on the strength of 10 third quarter scores form 6-4 post Jake Morsch (12 points, five rebounds) and five tallies from guard Jake Grenemeier (12 points). The Bobcats would tie the proceeding at 43 with 3:40 to play before the Panthers went on a 10-3 run to close out the contest where Goodbred proved vital from the charity stripe with six key throws to ice the game.

Becker and Frieders aided the Panthers cause with eight and six points respectively. Cory Buhler also chipped in with eight markers, while Dalton Heath added seven in the winning effort.

Dylan Wesolowski led the Bobcats with nine rebounds, while also recording nine points.



Norsemen head Little Ten All-Conference picks

As expected, Newark High School placed four members of its Class 1A state championship team on the Little Ten All-Conference team, which was released Thursday.

Seniors Kyle Anderson and John Avery both were unanimous selections to the team.

Kyle Anderson was a unanimous selection in each of his four years at Newark (33-1, 8-0). This year, he averaged 19.6 points, 4.6 rebounds, 3.7 assists and 2.6 steals per game for the Norsemen. He shot 50 percent from the field and was a member of the IBCA and AP all-state first teams.

Avery, meanwhile, was a repeat unanimous selection after averaging 14.4 points, 6.3 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game for the Norsemen. He connected on 62.9 percent of his shots and was an IBCA all-state third team selection.

Sophomore Brett Anderson also earned a nod for NHS. A 58 percent shooter from the field, he averaged 10.4 points and 6.9 rebounds per game for Newark.

Brett's older brother Jeremy was Newark's final honoree. He averaged 8.6 points on52.9 percent shooting from the fieldand added 5.4 rebounds per contest.

Elsewhere among local schools, Leland-Earlville's Reed Goodbred was a unanimous selection. The junior averaged 15.3 points per game, 8.2 rebounds and 5.0 assists per game for the Panthers (15-12, 4-4). He also shot 44 percent from the field.

Paw Paw's Brandon Safranek was the final Times-area honoree. As a senior, he averaged 17.9 points per game for the Bulldogs (7-20, 1-7). He scored 38 points against LaMoille-Ohio, 31 against DePue, 27 against Hinckley-Big Rock and 26 against Newark.

Serena (8-19, 4-4) and Somonauk (9-20, 4-4) did not have any players selected to the team.

Newark easily claimed this year's regular season and tournament conference titles.

Little Ten All-Conference

* indicates unanimous selection

Newark — Brett Anderson (So.), Jeremy Anderson (Sr.), *Kyle Anderson (Sr.), *John Avery (Sr.).

Hinckley-Big Rock — *Bernie Conley (So.).

Indian Creek — *Alex Bremner (Sr.), *Seth Sanderson (Sr.).

Leland-Earlville — *Reed Goodbred (Jr.).

LaMoille-Ohio —Michael Elam (Sr.).

Paw Paw — Brandon Safranek (Sr.).

Somonauk, Serena and Kirkland Hiawatha did not have any players selected.

                     Conf. Overall

School               W L    W L

Newark               8 0   33 1

Hinckley-Big Rock    7 1   16 14

Indian Creek         6 2   20 10

Leland-Earlville     4 4   15 12

Somonauk             4 4    9 20

Serena               4 4    8 19

LaMoille             2 6    3 24

Paw Paw              1 7    7 20

Hiawatha             0 8    4 20