Colors: Red, Blue, Gray
Conference: East Husker
Head Coach: Jay Knaak (5th season) (46-53 record)
2015-2016 record: 4-20 (lost to Humphrey/Lindsay Holy Family in Sub Districts)
Returning Starters: 0
The Clarkson/Leigh Boys hope to be better this year than they were last year when they won just four games.
The Patriots don’t have any returning starters though, and this is what Clarkson/Leigh’s starting lineup could look like:
Haden Held 11 G 0
Anthony Bruhn 11 G 0
Garrett Schroeder11 G 0
Luiz Mayorga 12 C 0
Mark Aguirre 12 F 0
5th year Head Coach Jay Knaak says Bradley Bunner is a newcomer who could make an impact.
“Bradley Bunner 6’0 12 F, he is going out for basketball for the first time in his high school career, but is a talented athlete so I hope he will contribute to the team on the boards and on defense.”
Blake Paprocki (12 6’1 F) is another returning letterwinner for the Patriots.
Knaak says he saw good growth and improvement in the offseason.
“We did a good job of improving over the summer. We were competitive in the Y league in Norfolk and some players took a step up in their game.”
Knaak adds the team figures to be challenged down low this season.
“We will not have much height this year, with our post players at 6’1 or less. We will have to depend on grit and hard work to get on the boards and defend the bigger post players we have in the conference.”
Clarkson/Leigh is looking for good things in 2016-2017.
Knaak discusses the keys to a successful season.
“We will have to rely on defense and shoot the ball at a better percentage. We are not very deep so will also have to stay out of foul trouble.”
Knaak says he’s looking for growth and improvement throughout the course of the season.
“I am looking forward to seeing if we can grow as a team and improve each game and see how good we can be at the end of the season.”
Knaak adds the team’s chemistry is good, they just need to develop a bench.
“I like the nucleus of the team and need to develop younger players to come off the bench and give the starters some rest and keep us in the ballgame.”
Knaak says it should be a fairly good season.
“We should be competitive in all of our games this year. We will have to depend on shooting the ball well from the outside, defending the post and forcing turnovers.”
Clarkson/Leigh is in Sub-District D1-4 with GACC, Pender, Emerson-Hubbard, and Walthill.
The Patriots open up the season on Friday at Humphrey/Lindsay Holy Family in a game that can be heard on 107.9 the Bull.
2016-2017 Clarkson/Leigh Patriots Boys Basketball Schedule:
12/02/16 @ Humphrey/Lindsay Holy Family
12/06/16 @ Oakland-Craig
12/17/16 @ Clarkson/Leigh
12/28-12/29 (To Be Determined) Nebraska Christian Holiday Tournament Nebraska Christian
01/03/17 @ North Bend Central
01/07/17 @ Guardian Angels Central Catholic
01/10/17 @ Tekamah-Herman
01/13/17 Humphrey St. Francis
01/17/17 Elgin Public/Pope John
01/19/17 @ Twin River
01/20/17 @ Lutheran High Northeast
01/24/17 @ Wisner-Pilger
01/28-02/04 (To Be Determined) East Husker Conference Tournament TBD
02/07/17 Logan View-Scribner-Snyder
02/09/17 @ Stanton
Colors: Red, Blue, Gray
Conference: East Husker
Head Coach: Matt Murren (4th season) (21-49 record)
2015-2016 record: 4-19 (lost to Battle Creek in Sub Districts)
Returning Starters: 4
The Clarkson/Leigh Girls hope and figure to be much improved this season given the fact four starters return this year.
Head Coach Matt Murren has this analysis of the returning starters.
“We have four girls back on this years roster that started at some point last season. Shelby Paprocki is a senior for us who has started the past two seasons and has a lot of ability on the perimeter and can score inside. Kaegan Held, Beth Wiese, and Hannah Kasik all started as freshmen last season. Kaegan is our point guard and plays a lot of minutes. Kaegan averaged almost 2.5 assists/game last season and we look for that number to increase this year as she is more comfortable with the offense. Hannah plays both inside and outside for us and looks to use her strength inside this season. She is a great rebounder and has ability to score in transition. Beth played both inside and outside for us last year and we look to get her more into her comfort zone back inside this season.”
Murren says Alyssa Novotny, Maddie Cerv, and a few others are key losses.
“We lost five seniors from last years team. Maddie Cerv was a 3 year starter for us and will be a big loss as far as a leader, defender, and shooter. Alyssa Novotny wasn’t able to play as a senior last season but did average 16 ppg and 11 rpg so she was missed last season and will be missed as well this season. We will also miss Jessi Sayers, Megan Svehla, and Camille Koehn who all contributed in different ways.”
Murren adds he’s excited about some newcomers who could make an impact.
“Ashlynn Novotny, younger sister to Alyssa, will impact our team this season. She has the ability to handle the ball, great vision, and can shoot the ball as well. She will play minutes for us this year as her, Kaegan, and Halee work well together as guards both defensively and offensively. Sara McEvoy (sophomore), Sydney Folken (junior), and Kim Stodoloa (freshman) could see some varsity minutes as they continue to pick up the speed of the varsity game as the season progresses.”
Murren feels success in fall sports should help the girls be successful this basketball season.
“The girls had great fall seasons in both softball and volleyball where both sports had winning records and winning seasons. We look to have that success in the fall sports transfer over into basketball. It’s my belief that in order to have a successful program, we must be successful in all girls activities here and the fall we had leads us in the right direction. It should give us confidence as we head into our season. ”
The girls worked really hard in the offseason, according to Murren.
“We had a great offseason, I was very impressed with how hard the girls worked. We had seven girls make our 10,000 shots made club last summer: Halee Steffensmeier, Held, Ashlynn Novotny, Paige Moore, Kasik, McEvoy, and Reagan Settje. It shows the girls’ commitment to basketball and shows they want to improve and get better when they put in individual time on their own. The most improvement that I saw this summer was from our transition offense creating opportunities for points for us. We did some summer activities such as trips to Mahoney State Park to continue to build ourselves together as a team. The girls enjoyed these activities and really had fun.”
Here is Clarkson/Leigh’s projected starting lineup:
We have seven girls that are currently competing for the five varsity starting spots and they’ve worked hard with each showing individual strengths to the team. I will list all seven who have an opportunity to be in the starting lineup that first night against Humphrey/LHF on December 2nd:
Year Ht. Pos Pts/Gm Reb/Gm Ast/Gm
Shelby Paprocki 12 5’8 F 6.3 5.9 1.8 (starter for 2 years)
Kaegan Held 10 5’4 G 4.7 2.9 2.3 (starter for 1 year)
Beth Wiese 10 5’8 F 2.1 2.3 0.5 (starter for 1 year)
Hannah Kasik 10 5’8 F 6.3 5.2 0.5 (starter for 1 year)
Paige Moore 10 5’8 F 1.4 1.7 0.4
Halee Steffensmeier10 5’4 G 1.2 0.7 0.4
Ashlynn Novotny 9 5’8 G