2014 - 2015 Season
February 9th UW-WC vs UW-Fox Valley 55 - 75
The UW-WC men's basketball squad hit an uncharacteristically low shooting spell connecting on only 27% of their shots, losing 76-55 at UW-Fox Valley Valley. Collin Liebherr led the Wildcats attack with 14 points and 6 rebounds. De'Andre Johnson hauled in 10 rebounds and added 9 points along with a pair of assists. Tim Pridemore and Evan Rathke led the team in steals with three each.
February 4th UW-WC vs UW-Waukesha 91 - 75
The Wildcats triumphantly returned to West Bend - victorious after earning a hard fought win over one of the conference front runners as UW-Washington County defeated the very physical UW-Waukesha County Cougars 91 to 75 on the Cougars home floor. The Wildcats stayed close in the first 20 minutes and took a 44-42 halftime lead when Domo Richie beat the buzzer with a 3-Pointer. They never trailed after that.
Rebounding was the key throughout the game. The hustling Wildcats out-rebounded the taller Cougars 49 to 28 and held Waukesha to a season low 3 second chance points for the entire game. Collin Liebherr scored a game high 19 and grabbed 8 rebounds. Tim Pridemore tallied 18 points, 10 rebounds, and 3 assists. Domo Richie scored 17 and pulled down 7 boards. Evan Rathke scored 15, including a spectacular dunk, and added 4 assists and 3 steals. Hayden Steinhardt also had 4 assists for the Wildcats who continue to improve on their shot selection and scored a season high 91 points due to 51% shooting from the floor.
The Cougars made more three pointers, 13 to 8, but it was the Wildcats 40-22 advantage in scoring in the paint that proved the difference maker. Waukesha County was poised to host Marinette Saturday in the season finale with a chance to share the WCC championship, but the loss to Washington County dropped them from the regular
Jan. 29th UW-WC vs UW-Sheboygan 88 - 71
Dominating the rebounding category 55 to 37, UW-Washington outscored UW-Sheboygan 34 to 5 in second chance points and cruised to an 88-71 victory. Playing in possibly his final home game with the Wildcats, 2014-2015 Conference Player of the Year Evan Rathke had 23 points, 14 rebounds, 5 blocked shots, and 3 steals.
The versatile Rathke started the game at point guard, and played every position on the floor for the Wildcats during the game. Wildcat center De'Andre Johnson recorded 16 points and 13 rebounds. Collin Liebherr added 15 points and 7 rebounds. And Domo Ritchie contributed 13 points, 9 rebounds, 3 assists, 2 steals. Javon Williams led the Wildcats in assists with 6.
Hayden Steinhardt scored just before the halftime buzzer to give the Wildcats the momentum going into the locker room leading 35-26. Later in the second half, following a Sheboygan rally, Steinhardt delivered an extra long range 3-Pointer that just beat the shot clock and seemed to seal the game for the Wildcats.
Jan. 28th UW-WC vs UW-Fond du Lac 86 - 88
The UW-WC gym has been the site of several very close basketball games this month. But this time, the Wildcats lost a heart breaker in double overtime 88-86 to UW-FDL Wednesday night. The Wildcats were led by Evan Rathke with 20 points, 8 rebounds, and 8 blocked shots, Javon Williams with 17 points, 11 rebounds, and 8 assists, and Hayden Steinhardt with 17 points, 7 rebounds, and 5-10 3-Pointers. Hartford'a Tim Pridemore had 7 assists to go along with 5 rebounds and 5 points.
The UW-FDL Falcons had 4 players with 15 or more points, but in the end the game winning 3-pointer was launched by Brandom Mueller for only his second basket of the game which erased the one point UW-WC lead.
The game was tied 74 all at the end of regulation and 80 to 80 after the first overtime.
Jan. 24th UW-WC vs UW-Marinette 60 - 61
The UW-WC Wildcats held the high scoring UW-Marinette Buccaneers to their lowest point total of the season at 61 (previous Marinette low was 71 and they have scored over 100 points 3 times). A gallent effort fell short as the Wildcats ran out of time on their furious last minute rally, coming from 7 points down late in the game to nearly upset the first place team in the WCC, losing to the Buccaneers 61-60.
Tim Pridemore played especially well for the Wildcats, leading the team in rebounds with 11, assists with 4, and steals with 2. Pridemore additionally scored 10 points and added 3 blocked shots. Evan Rathke led all scorers with 13 points and also blocked 3 shots. Javon Williams scored 11 to go along with 3 assists. De'Andre Johnson added 8 points and 6 rebounds.
UW-Marinette was led in scoring by Jared Rivard with 11. Brenden Thomas added 10 points and 5 assists, and Travis Champeau hit double figures with 10. Marinette's leading rebounder was Casey Wilson with 9.
Statistically, the difference in the game came down to free throws where UW-WC made 5 of only 6 attempts while UW-Marinette tallied 15 of 21 from the line. From the floor, the Wildcats slightly out-shot the Buccaneers 41% to 38%, and the Wildcats committed 3 less turnovers. But the Buccaneers held slight advantages in rebounding 36-31 and assists 13-9.
Jan. 14th UW-WC vs UW-Sheboygan 64 - 59
The UW-Washington Wildcats battled to overcome adversity to capture their fourth consecutive victory, 64-59 at UW-Sheboygan. Hartford’s Tim Pridemore led all scorers with 21 points, connecting on 9 of his 16 field goal attempts, including 3 highlight film off balance drive and finish plays, and 2 of 5 from 3-point land. Pridemore also led the Wildcats in assists with 3.West Bend East graduate Hayden Steinhardt fired in 15 points while going 3 of 7 from beyond the arc. Two of his three pointers ended scoring runs by the host Wombats.Random Lake’s Evan Rathke led the Wildcats in rebounding with 10 and he scored 9 points.Collin Liebherr from West Bend East led in steals with 3 and scored 6 points, while De’Andre Johnson from Milwaukee Conservatory School of Life Long Learning grabbed 7 rebounds to go along with his 6 points.
The Wombats were led in scoring by Kortu Josiah and George Hawkins with 15 each. Lucas McKnight added 10 points. Tyler Hollis led all rebounders with 13.As a team, the Wombats outrebounded the Wildcats 45-34, but the Wildcats full court press helped force 22 turnovers.Trailing 13-5 after the first 8:30 of the game, the Wildcats rallied to post a slight 28-25 advantage on the score board by halftime.In the second half, UW-WC raced out to a 41-29 advantage before UW-Sheboygan responded to close the gap, and the game remained close the rest of the way. Excellent ball handling and patience by the Wildcats in the second half, committing only 3 turnovers and consistently running the shot clock down to work the defense more, were primary adjustments that impacted the results of the game.
Jan. 12th UW-WC vs UW-Richland 78 - 74
In a game that featured numerous lead changes the Wildcats surged ahead late, then showed their poise by effectively running time off the clock, and converting their free throws down the stretch to earn a hard fought 78-74 victory over talented, experienced, and aggressive UW- Richland.
UW-WC's Evan Rathke, Tim Pridemore, Hayden Steinhardt, Collin Liebherr, and Javon Williams all combined to connect on 10 of 13 free throws in the closing minutes of the game to preserve the Wildcats' third consecutive victory.
Evan Rathke scored inside and outside, finishing the game with 22 points and 11 rebounds without committing any turnovers. He was clutch behind the arc hitting 4 three pointers in 6 attempts.
Tim Pridemore and Dominique Richie each added 16 points to the Wildcats attack. Collin Liebherr had 9 points and 9 rebounds. De'Andre Johnson grabbed 11 rebounds, and Javon Williams led in the assist category with 4 and steals with 3.
Though the Roadrunners out-rebounded the Wildcats 47-43, the Wildcats held slim margins in shooting percentage at 40% to 38%, assists 17-14, and steals 9-8. Both teams had 15 turnovers.
UW Richland's John Hassell led all scorers with 24 points and collected 7 rebounds. Brian Wilder scored 18, and Charles Gray added 13 points and 11 boards. Diondre Howard led all rebounders with 17. Grant Dull scored 9 points on 3 3-pointers and dished out 7 assists.
UW-Richland returned five players from the Roadrunners team that advanced all the way to the WCC Championship game last season before losing to Fox Valley at Just a Game Field House in Wisconsin Dells.
Next up for UW-WC is Wednesday's game at UW-Sheboygan with a 7PM tip off.
Jan. 7th - UW-WC vs Fox Valley Technical (70-66)
2014 Conference Player of the Year, Evan Rathke hit the game winning shot from 12 feet out along the right baseline, slightly behind the backboard, with 1.5 seconds to play giving the Wildcats a 68-66 lead.
On the previous possession, Tim Pridemore made two free throws to tie the game at 66.
After a turnover, Hayden Steinhardt was fouled and made two free throws with 0.5 seconds to seal the game. The Wildcats charged back from a 59-53 deficit against a very tough team from Fox Valley Technical College that was riding a winning streak over the recent winter break.
2014 West Bend East graduate, Collin Liebherr recorded a double double, pulling down 12 boards to go with 11 points. Collin also assisted Rathke on the game winning basket.
The Wildcats closed the game on a 17-7 run after trailing by six in the closing minutes. Port Washington's Darius Will started the rally by drilling a three pointer from the left corner while playing in his final game for UW-WC (Darius is transferring to UW-Whitewater to attend spring football practices and play wide receiver for national champion Warhawks).
UW-WC executed perfectly in the last minute of the game, scoring 6 points on their final three possessions, while switching to their new Camouflage defense for the first time, resulting in two critical defensive stops in the final 38 seconds.
The Wildcats opened the game fast, jumping out to a quick 7-2 lead in the first two minutes before FVT pulled together to achieve a 4 point halftime lead.
Then the Wildcats opened the 2nd half with a fury, racing out to a 36-34 lead in the first minute and a half. Once again though a very poised team from Fox Valley Tech responded and regained the lead, until the Wildcats fought back for their largest margin of the game at 48-41. That's when FVT went on an 18-8 run for their biggest lead at 59-53, setting the stage for the Wildcats heroic comeback.
UW-WC shot only 28.5% from the floor in the 1st half, but 48.2% in the 2nd half. The difference was in their 2nd half success at driving the ball to the basket and getting the ball inside to the post players.
The taller team from FVT out-rebounded the scrappy Wildcats 47-36.
Game totals: UW-WC 16-24 Free Throws, 6-22 3-pointers, 24-64 Total Field Goals, 14 Fouls, 12 Assists, 11 Steals, 17 Turnovers, 6 Blocked Shots, 36 Rebounds
Game totals: Fox Valley Tech 12-17 Free Throws, 4-18 3-pointers, 25-70 Total Field Goals, 20 Fouls, 12 Assists, 10 Steals, 20 Turnovers, 2 Blocked Shots, 47 Rebounds
Dec. 10th - UW-WC vs UW-Rock 69 - 88
The UW-Washington County Wildcats fell to UW-Rock County 88-69 Wednesday night. A courageous 2nd half effort sparked by Evan Rathke (16pts 4rebs) and Colin Liebherr (23pts 7rebs) was not enough to overcome Rock County. The Wildcats cut a 19pt halftime down to 11 early in the 2nd half as they came out of the locker room with a sense of urgency. However, the Rattlers paced by Montrell Presley (20pts 12rebs) and Brandon Barnes (19pts 9rebs) were too resilient. The Wildcats (2-8) are on break til January. They will resume play on January 7th @ UW-Washington County against Fox Valley Technical College.
Dec. 3rd - UW-WC vs UW-Waukesha 76 - 89
After building an early lead, the University of Wisconsin-Waukesha held onto the lead and defeated the University of Wisconsin-Washington County, 89-76, on Wednesday.
Coming into the game, UW-Waukesha had an apparent size advantage in the paint and utilized it as much as it could. But, that size advantage didn’t concern UW-WC coach Arom Murrell.
“We weren’t concerned with their size. We were confident we’d be formidable opponents,” Murrell said. “They were more aggressive than we anticipated. They’re a well-coached bunch and executed well.”
With about seven minutes left in the first half, the Cougars (4-4) led by 16 points, but the Wildcats (2-7) responded by going on a run of their own, bringing the game to within seven points, 40-33.
UW-Waukesha’s Cody Walters played a key role coming off the bench, providing an early spark and leading the Cougars with 16 points in just 20 minutes of playing time.
At the half, the Cougars led by eight, but despite that lead, Murrell thought his team had secured the momentum heading into the second half.
“They made some tough baskets in the first half,” he said. “They tried to press us and we broke the press a few times, and that gave us some confidence that we were still in reach.”
To start the second half, the Cougars went on a 12-0 run over the first six minutes of the half and led by 20. At that point, UW-Waukesha had seized the momentum.
“We talked at halftime about having a good start to the second half,” Cougars coach Adam Ligocki said. “We had an OK first half and I thought if we could extend the game in the first four minutes (of the second half) that we could play with the lead and get the win.”
Evan Rathke, who led all scorers with 20 points, broke the Wildcats’ scoring drought but, by that time, the lead was almost insurmountable.
“The second half was the tale of the tape,” Murrell said. “A lot of our easy buckets in the second half didn’t drop. They kept their foot on the gas and as we were missing, they were making, and that spelled the doom.”
UW-Waukesha had the luxury of not only size, but a deep bench as well. When 6-foot-7 Jaime Bonczkowski got into early foul trouble, the Cougars went to their bench and see similar production from their reserve players.
The most minutes played by a Cougars player was 23 by Russ Finco. The Wildcats had five players with at least 25 minutes and played three players for more than 30 minutes.
“Depth is a huge strength for us,” Ligocki said. “We can wear people out. We don’t have much of a drop-off from the first five to the next five. It makes our team better as the season goes on.”
Along with Bonczkowski, 6-foot-7 Travis Crayton played a huge role in the game.
“(Bonczkowski and Crayton) bring great energy every time they’re out there. They really bring up the rest of the team. They’re the key to our success,” Ligocki said.
Both Murrell and Ligocki are relatively new to the Wisconsin Collegiate Conference, with Murrell being in his first year and Ligocki in his second.
Both are in the process of trying to build a long-term basketball program, but with different ideals.
Murrell plans to use his roots in Milwaukee to extend the recruiting south of Washington County, and even into Texas where he lives.
“I think what we really want to do is establish an identity for not only style of play but standard of what we expect basketball here to be like,” Murrell said. “I think we have some athletes to do that, but you never totally get that done in the first year. It’s a process and I knew in the first year it wouldn’t all come to fruition.
“I have a rapport with a lot of city coaches and I’d like to establish a relationship with these area schools here, as well. I live in Texas and have a recruiting base there. There’s one kid (from Texas) who committed and will be here in January.”
Ligocki said he’s all about bring in local talent from Waukesha and bringing in a supportive community.
“I’ve been in Waukesha for the last 10 years. The first thing I wanted was guys who wanted to be student athletes and I wanted guys from Waukesha County. Being in my second year now, this year has been a lot smoother than last year so far,” Ligocki said.
Nov. 19 - UW-WC vs UW-Fond du Lac 79 - 82
A 52 point scoring burst in the 2nd half was not enough to over-come a 47-27 halftime deficit for the Wildcats. The 52 point 2nd half scoring output was the most of any half for the season for UW-Washington County. A great shooting night by freshman guard Tim Pridemore (31 pts, 13 rebs, 3 sts) and Colin Liebherr (21 pts, 5 rebs), were not enough to slow down the sharp-shooting Falcons of UW-Fond Du Lac. UW-FDL was led by Hoff with 29 pts, 5 rebs and Pickert 25 pts 7 rebs
Nov. 17 - UW-WC vs UW-Richland 63 - 66
The Wildcats lost a close game to the Roadrunners of UW-Richland 66-63. Turnovers and poor offensive execution proved to be the demise of UW-WC as the now fall to 2-5 on the season. UW-Richland was led by reserve Brian Gentry with 22pts and Charles Gray with 11pts. The Wildcats were led by Colin Liebherr with 30pts and 10rebs and Evan Rathke with 14pys and 10rebs. UW-Wc will play its next opponent Wednesday night @ UW-Fond du Lac at 730pm.
Nov. 15 - UW-WC vs UW-Marinette 67 - 88
The UW-Washington Wildcats lost to a solid shooting UW-Marinette Buccaneer team 88-67 @ Marinette Saturday afternoon. UW-WC was led by freshman forward Darius Will with 29pts and freshman forward Colin Liebherr with 16pt. Zack Neumann led the way for UW-Marinette with 24pt.
Nov. 12 - UW-WC vs UW-Sheboygan 76 - 67
The Wildcats break a 3 game losing streak by beating the Wombats of UW-Sheboygan in a conference home game 76-67. UW-Washington was led by freshman colin Liebherr with 26pt and 9 rebs. Also contributing was Tim Pridemore with 14pts. UW-Sheboygan was led by Cedric Foster with 15pts and 5 rebs. The Wildcats play on the road next on Saturday at UW-Marinette at 3pm.
Nov. 10 - UW-WC vs UW-Fox Valley Valley 54 - 72
UW-Washington was unable to hold off the Cyclones from UW-Fox Valley after taking a 34-29 lead into the locker-room at the half. Marcus Jansen led UW-Fox Valley with 24pts. Evan Rathke paced the Wildcats with 22pts. UW-Washington will host UW-Sheboygan Wednesday night at 7:30pm.
Nov. 7 - UW-WC vs Fox Valley Tech 69 - 72
The Wildcats trailed as much as 18 points in the 2nd half before going on a 21-3 run to take a 69-68 lead with just over 1;30 left in the game. Nick Wolf led FVTC with 19points and 15 rebounds. Evan Rathke led UW-WC with 26 points and 12 rebounds. The Wildcats host UW-Fox Valley Monday night at 7:30pm in their home opener
Oct. 31- UW-WC vs UW-Marathon 68 - 60
The Wildcats fell short against the Huskies 68-60 Friday night. Led by Hayden Steinhardt's 22pt and Evan Rathke's 16pts and 12 rebounds. Mason Elsen led UW-Marathon with 11pt and 8 pt rebounds. UW-Washington County will play again next Friday against Fox Valley Tech @ 7:30pm.
2013 - 2014 Season
Feburary 15th - W.C.C. State Quarter Finals
The Men's Basketball team will be hosting the Wisconsin Collegiate Conference Quarter Finals on
Saturday, February 15th for a 2:00 p.m. tip off time. Stop by and support your wildcat team. The Wildcat will be playing against UW-Marinette. The winner will advance to the Semi-Finals playing against UW-Manitowoc at Manitowoc on Wednesday, February 19th for a 7:00 p.m. start time.
Jan. 17 - 18 UW-Marshfield Tournament
WILDCATS WIN 44th ANNUAL MARSHFIELD CLASSIC
By Russ Thull
The UW-Washington Wildcats Men’s basketball team took part in the 44th Annual Marshfield Basketball tournament. The tournament consisted of 4 teams; UW-Washington, UW-Marshfield, UW- Fond du lac, and Fox Valley Technical college. On Friday, UW-Washington played UW-Marshfield. UW-Washington was down 7 early in the 1st half, but battled back to take a 32-29 lead at halftime. UW-Washington did not give up the lead the rest of the way as they outscored UW-Marshfield 33-26 in the second half to advance to the championship round 65-55. Evan Rathke led the way for the Wildcats with 24 points and 11 rebounds. Chris Gough kept his hot shooting streak going, scoring 18 points on 6 threes. Bill Haught also stepped up big time with his season high 14 points and 7 rebounds. “Bill is a high character individual, he works extremely hard in practice and I always know what I will get from Bill. We don’t win this game without Bill hitting some big shots vs Marshfield’s zone.”
Fox Valley Technical College also advanced to the finals after knocking off UW-Fond du lac. Saturday’s Fox Valley Tech and UW-Washington championship game is a rematch from a matchup earlier in the season which Fox Valley Tech won 85-60. “We knew that we were going to compete in this game because we are a different team than what we were in game 3 of this season. We knew in our first matchup that we gave up a ton of transition points. We also emphasized that we needed to get Evan Rathke a lot of touches down low. Fox Valley Tech plays a very aggressive man defense and they don’t like to give a lot of help off their man. We knew that Evan would have a lot of 1 on 1 opportunity in the post if we could get him the ball.” The Wildcats were successful in that attempt, as Rathke was a handful inside, scoring a game high and season high 37 points as he helped lead UW-Washington to a 81-76 victory. “In my 10 years of coaching, I don’t know if I ever coached a player with the full package of talent and leadership that Evan offers. He is a phenomenal player, yet he is an even better leader for us. It is an honor for me to coach him and too watch him play the game the way he does.”
Rathke was also named to the all-tournament team, which consists of the top 5 players for the weekend as well as earning tournament MVP as he averaged 30.5 points, 8.5 rebounds and 5 assists over the weekend. Chris Gough also played a major role in the Wildcat’s success as he was also named to the All-tournament team as his hot shooting has made teams shake their heads on how to defend him. His presence as a deep threat also opens up the floor for others as well. Over the past 4 games, Chris is shooting 25/43 from three point range. He finished the tournament averaging 21 ppg, 5 rebounds and 3 assists. The Dynamic Duo of Evan and Chris was far from the reason the Wildcats took 1st place in the tournament as many other Wildcats stepped up at crucial times. Jon Lardy was a force on the boards, as he averaged 11 rebounds per game. Kyle Gallant, Tim Montag and Cory Crews did a great job handling pressure on the perimeter. Kyle finished Friday night’s game with 8 rebounds and 8 assists. He also did a great job handling the pressure in both games only turning the ball over 3 times combined. “Kyle is playing his best basketball of the season. To have 2 games which he averaged 32 minutes in each with only 3 turnovers as the point guard is a tremendous feat.”
The Wildcats (9-7 overall, 4-3 conference) have 5 games remaining before playoffs begin. They are on the road vs UW-Marinette on Saturday looking to extend their 4 game winning streak.
Jan. 13 UW-Washington vs UW-Richland Center
Wildcats win second semester opener 88 - 73
By Russ Thull
Wildcats start 2nd semester off strong on the road vs UW Richland.
Wildcats have faced their share of adversity throughout this season, but none bigger than the current one. With 5 key players academically ineligible, the Wildcats began the semester with a convincing 88-73 win over UW-Richland. The Wildcats were led by Chris Gough, who scored 29 points and hit 7 three pointers. Evan Rathke and Blake Wiskirchen each added 23 and 18 respectively. "This was the ultimate team win, knowing what we were facing and coming out like we have not lost a step. I know that my players will play hard, they always do." The Wildcats executed well and they were able to get Rathke a bunch of touches in the paint. "We like to play inside out, when we do that it opens things up for others."
UW-Washington will host UW-Sheyboygan on Wednesday at 7pm.
Dec. 11 UW-Washington vs UW-Rock County
Wildcats lose last game of semester, 58 - 66
By Bill Haught
Sometimes you just run out of gas.
That was the case Wednesday night when the UW-Washington County men's basketball team travelled two hours to UW-Rock County to take on the Rattlers. The Wildcats were without top scorer Evan Rathke, who did not play because of an ankle injury.
After being up by 6 and allowing 22 points in the first half of play, the Wildcats extended their lead to 17 by going on an 11-0 run to start the second half. From that point on, roles reversed in the game, as UW-Rock County went on an offensive tear, tying the game at 55 and closing it out with free throws at the end of the game, making the final score 66-58.
The top scorers for the Wildcats were DJ Gollwitzer and Chris Gough, who each had 16 points. UW-Rock County was led by Kyle Hawkins, who had 17 points on 5/10 shooting.
The Wildcats play their next game after holiday break at home, on January 6th versus UW-Concordia.
Dec. 4 UW-Washington vs UW-Waukesha
Wildcats come up short in Waukesha, 84-60
By Bill Haught
Coming off of a game on Monday versus UW-Manitowoc, the UW-Washington County men's basketball team looked to rebound from that loss by taking on the UW-Waukesha Cougars on Wednesday, December 4th.Unfortunately, the Wildcats were not able to overcome the Cougars' fast-paced offensive attack, which was led by guard Christian Valadez, who scored 16 points. Three other Cougars scored in double digits.
Evan Rathke and Chris Gough led UW-Washington County in scoring, with Rathke scoring 22 while adding 6 recbounds and Gough scoring 16 with four three-pointers. At the end of the first half, the Wildcats were down by 17 points, trailing 45-28. After showing brief periods of being able to tug away at the lead, the Wildcats began to lose a chance of getting back in the game, as the UW-Waukesha offense slowed down and ate up the clock for much of the second half.
The Wildcats are looking to bounce back from the loss, which put them at 5-6 on the season, on Wednesday, December 11th at UW-Rock County.
Box Score First Half Second Half Final
UW-Washington County 28 32 60
UW-Waukesha 45 39 84
Evan Rathke: 22 pts. 7/15 FG 6 reb.
Chris Gough: 16 pts. 6/14 FG 5 reb.
Christian Valadez 16 pts. 3/6 FG 4 ast.
Matt Fox-Whitaker 15 pts. 5/10 FG 7 reb.
Dec. 2 UW-Washington vs UW-Manitowoc
Wildcats Fall to Blue Devils at Home, 60 - 75
By Bill Haught
Losing a game you feel you could have won is never easy. The UWWC Wildcats returned to their home gymnasium on Monday to take on the UW-Manitowoc Blue Devils. The Wildcats were unable to secure a victory.
Washington County scored the first basket of the game, but that was the only lead the team held for the game's duration. After getting the UW-Manitowoc lead down to 7 late in the first half, a combination of turnovers and offensive rebounds given up by the Wildcats made it difficult for the team to get the lead down any further.
“Manitowoc's offense thrives off of turnovers and offensive rebounds,” commented UWWC head coach Russell Thull. “The defensive pressure took us out of our rhythm offensively.” The Wildcats gave up 22 offensive rebounds. “We gave them too many extra chances and [that] also limited our opportunites on the offensive end.” added Thull.
Freshman Evan Rathke once again led the Wildcats in scoring, with 23 points. UW-Manitowoc was led by Xavier Fletcher, who scored fifteen points. UW-Washington County plays UW-Manitowoc again in Manitowoc on Monday, February 3rd, and are playing their next game on Wednesday, December 4th at UW-Waukesha.
Despite the loss, the Wildcats are looking to bounce back. Coach Thull commented on his and the team's outlook by saying, “My mindset is the same as every other day; that is to continue to work hard and find ways to improve our team. My players will work hard and we will rebound.”
Box Score First Half Second Half Total
UW-Manitowoc 42 33 75
UW-WC 27 33 60
Evan Rathke 23 pts, 9/16 FG, 6 reb.
DJ Gollwitzer 13 pts, 5/12 FG, 7 reb.
Will Colassacco 8 pts, 3/9 FG, 12 reb.
Xavier Fletcher 15 pts, 6/9 FG
D. Thompson 15 pts, 5/15 FG
C. Bryant 14 pts, 4/10 FG
Nov. 18th - UW-Washington vs UW-Richland
Wildcats halt Roadrunners in come-from-behind win
by Bill Haught
The Wildcats of UW-Washington County continued their now three-game winning streak versus the UW-Richland Roadrunners on Monday, winning 84-77.
UW-WC and UW-Richland started out red-hot on offense, with both teams matching each other's baskets for much of the first half, until UW-Richland went on a run to put the halftime score at 41-37 in their favor.
The Wildcats knew this was an opportunity to step up under pressure, and make a statement by coming back to turn the lead in their favor. Washington County started the half down six points and ended up winning by seven when the final buzzer sounded.
One of the key contributors to the Wildcats' intensity was Evan Rathke, who has been the primary option for his team as of late, coming off of a 30 point game against UW-Marinette two days prior. Rathke scored 37 points, with 21 coming in the first half of play. Despite his stellar scoring performance, Rathke focused on the positives for his team: “We needed one of these games because this was our first close game.
“Evan is a very unselfish player,” said coach Russell Thull. “He played at one hundred percent through the whole 38 minutes he played. He is our leader.”
With much of Rathke's scoring coming in the post and from free throws (by shooting 13/15 from the line), several other players stepped up and played the inside-out game effectively. Starting point guard Chris Gough added 19 points, nine of which were from beyond the arc. Second year forward Tim Hovorka contributed a double-double off the bench, with 12 points and 10 rebounds.
The Wildcats are now looking to keep their winning streak alive against UW-Fon Du Lac on Wendesday, rounding out a three-game homestand.
“A three-game win streak is something to be proud of. We're going to get right back at it against Fon Du Lac on Wednesday. We're excited.” said Thull.
Nov. 16th - UW-Washington vs. UW-Marinette
UW-WC Men's Basketball edge out UW-Marinette
By Bill Haught
In a tense finish, the UW-Washington County Wildcats returned to West Bend after 3 away games to out-battle the UW-Marinette Buccaneers, 79-75 Saturday. The victory improves the Wildcats' record to 3-3 overall and 2-1 in conference play.
For the second consecutive game, UW-Washington County had four players in double figure scoring. One of those players was Evan Rathke, who notched 30 points and 10 rebounds in 33 minutes. “I was just trying to get into the open lanes and get in the block to finish the easy shots.”
Points in the paint were a big factor in deciding the game's outcome, as UW-Washington County outscored UW-Marinette 44-18 down low, and several came off of offensive rebounds. UW-WC won the rebounding margin, and scored more points per possession as well.
Sophomore and second-year player Tim Hovorka contributed 17 points off of the bench. “I want to contribute to my team in any way possible. When coach puts me in I'm going to give 110% any time I'm out on the floor.”
Teamwork has been a main focus of the Wildcats, who become a tight-knit group of players that are becoming a more cohesive unit. Head coach Russell Thull stated that “[We've improved on] our overall team chemistry: working together, seeing where guys are cutting, understanding each others strengths, and executing.”
“We're working the ball around, and knowing the offense better. I think our chemistry is something we've improved on. Guys are knowing the offense better so we're not 'thinking' about it. We're running through it and creating.” added Rathke.
The Wildcats look to keep their winning streak going on Monday at home, where they face off against UW-Richland at 7 pm.
Nov. 13th - UW-Washington vs. UW-Sheboygan
Wildcats Win First Away Game
by Bill Haught
After dropping three games in a row to start the first road trip of the season, the UW-Washington County Men's basketball team notched its second win versus the UW-Sheboygan Wombats, improving to 1-1 in conference play and 2-3 overall.
An important part of the Wildcats' win was a 14-2 run that started the game. By the end of the first half, the Wildcats held a 39-19 lead.
Freshman swingman Matthew Lane commented on the Wildcats' initial run by saying, “It was a huge part of our success. Coach Thull got us fired up before the game and laid out the groundwork for what we had to do. We started our last two games out flat, but during this one we executed well.”
“Starting the game well was a good confidence boost,” head coach Russell Thull said. “I was also impressed with how much we shared the ball, as well as how we got it into the post. We were also very efficient to start out the game.” The Wildcats shot 59.3% in the first half of play.
Additionally, UW-Washington County had 4 players in double digits in points. “We have so many guys on this team that can put the ball in the hoop,” Lane added. He also dished out 9 assists in 28 minutes of play. “I'm just happy to be the guy to feed the ball to my teammates.”
The Wombats did stage a run in the second half, but the Wildcats responded by closing out the game to bring the final score to 67-52.
UW-Washington County comes home to play their next game on Saturday at 12:00 versus UW-Marinette.
Nov. 11th - UW-Washington vs. UW-Fox Valley Valley
Wildcats lose battle with Cyclones at UW-Fox Valley Valley
by Bill Haught
Taking on the defending state champions was no easy task for the UW-Washington County Wildcats, who lost to the UW-Fox Valley Cyclones 75-57 Monday night.
Freshman forward Will Colassacco saw this as an opportunity to step up for his team, and was inserted into the starting lineup. Colassacco led the Wildcats in scoring with 15 points off of a perfect 7/7 shooting from the field. “I was making sure to run our plays correctly, make plenty of back cuts, and just play tough,” Colassacco said. “We were working with what we had, since we had two players out with injuries. They played hard and wore us out a little.”
The Wildcats were without their starting sophomore guard, Kyle Gallant, and freshman forward Jon Lardy due to injuries to the knee and groin, respectively.
Starting games off better was a focus for the Wildcats going into the game, and it showed. UW-WC took the lead early on in the game and ended the first half trailing 33-25. Playing tougher defense was a focus for the team, and the Wildcats' defensive effort was led by freshman forward Tim Belland, who took 6 charges before leaving late in the second half with a sprained ankle. “I wanted to get in the best position possible to help my team, and [taking 6 charges] helped our cause.” said Belland.
UW-Washington County wanted to make a statement playing against the reigning state champions, and are looking forward to the rest of the season after battling with the Cyclones for most of the game.
The Wildcats play their next game at UW-Sheboygan on Wednesday, November 13th.
Nov. 6 - UW-Washington vs. Fox Valley Technical College
Wildcats drop away opener vs. Fox Valley Tech
by Bill Haught
The UW-Washington County Wildcats men’s basketball team lost its first away game of the 2013-14 season Saturday night, 85-60, versus Fox Valley Technical College in UW-Fox Valley Valley’s gym.
Fox Valley Tech jumped out to a 12-0 lead to start the game, and held the lead for the entirety of the game.
Several fast break points contributed to the Foxes’ victory, as well as a 35-18 advantage in points off of bench players. UW-Fox Valley scored 21 points off of turnovers, and those points led to layups in transition.
“We have to do a better job of getting back and communicating,” said UW-Washington County coach Russell Thull.
A major factor in the Foxes’ first half offensive attack was Darius Banks, who shot 4/5 from beyond the three point arc in the first half, and finished the game with 24 points.
“We gave up too many high-percentage looks,” added Thull. UW-Fox Valley Tech shot 56.8% during the first half, and led 54-29 at the break.
Despite the Foxes’ first half success, the Wildcats were not going to go down without a fight. Evan Rathke notched 27 points on 10/15 shooting from the field, while adding six free throws.
UW-Washington County held the Foxes to 33.3% shooting for the second half, and tied the Foxes in scoring for the rest of the game at 31-31.
The UW-Washington County Wildcats play their next game on Monday, November 11th, at UW-Fox Valley Valley.
Box Score: 1st Half 2nd Half Total
Washington County 29 31 60
Fox Valley Tech 54 31 85
Nov. 2 - UW-Washington vs UW-Marathon
UW-Washington County Men's Basketball looks ahead following loss to UW-Marathon
by Bill Haught
The UW-Marathon Huskies handed the UW-Washington County Wildcats their first loss of the season Saturday, 98-55, dropping the Wildcats' record to .500 at 1-1 to start the season. The Huskies attacked on both sides of the ball, and used their 18-man roster's depth to their advantage.
UW-Washington County was without two players for the game, Will Collassco and DJ Gollwitzer.
The Huskies also used their size well, out-scoring the Wildcats 48-22 in the paint. Led by Guard Caleb Glennon's 26 points, UW-Marathon's offensive attack proved too strong for the Wildcats' defense.
While the final score was hard to stomach for the Wildcats, the team has maintained that they will learn from this experience. The Huskies out-rebounded the Wildcats 67-40, with many of them contributing to second-chance points.
Co-captain of the Wildcats, forward Jon Lardy reiterated: “The biggest aspect of the game that made us lose was our rebounding not being where it should have been.”
“We contested the first shot, and gave up offensive rebounds that led to putbacks.” said co-captain Evan Rathke, who led the Wildcats in scoring with 14 points.
“We need to finish possessions defensively. That was the number one thing that hurt us.” said head coach Russell Thull. “Nevertheless, it is something that we can work on in practice, and going into the next game,” stated assistant coach Ethan Derricks. “Once we work out the kinks, I think that we will be a team that is tough to beat.”
The game was not without positives for the Wildcats, and the team is taking the loss in stride. “Nobody likes to lose but you have to take it as a learning experience. We'll come together, work hard, and get back into the groove,” Lardy emphasized. “I can't wait until we do.”
The Wildcats play their next game against UW-Fox Valley Tech on November 6th, in UW-Fox Valley Valley's gym.
Oct. 30th - UW-Washington vs. UW-Baraboo
UW Washington Win Home Opener!
The 2013-2014 season is underway for the UW-Washington County Wildcats. It started out with a very entertaining win. It was entertaining because the Wildcats were able to showcase nine new players to go with two returning players. “This is an exciting year for us because of the caliber of players that we believe we have from top to bottom, said Coach Thull” Evan Rathke and Chris Gough got their careers started at UW-WC on a positive note. Evan scored 19 points to go with 16 rebounds and 5 blocks. Chris scored a team high 32 points and shot 9-18 from three point range. “Those are two pretty big stat lines, but what you don’t see is the team effort that the Wildcats displayed. “DJ Gollwitzer hit some big shots off the bench, Kyle Gallant handled the pressure and dished out 7 assists and TIm Hovorka added 7 rebounds, and I could go on and on,” Thull added. The Wildcats next game is at home vs UW-Marathon at 3 pm.
UW WASHINGTON 78 UW BARABOO 63