High School Basketball

myHitNews.com Prepares To Bring You More In ’09

Posted on February 20, 2009. Filed under: College Football, High School Basketball, High School Football, High School Track & Field | Tags: , , , , , , , , |

Hit Highlights.com

By Will Cummings
myHitNews.com

  

   As myHitNews.com (formerly Hit News.com) moves closer to celebrating its first anniversary in April, we are also preparing to move our site from WordPress.com back to WordPress.org, which is the non-free self-hosted version of WordPress that will be hosted by Hit Highlights.com.

   This move will allow us to have more control over content and appearance and the ability to generate revenue through advertisement. But don’t worry, we will continue to keep this site free to our visitors, whose numbers have steadily grown despite our not having any advertisement.  Inasmuch, last month (January), myHitnews.com peaked with an average daily number of 327–different–computers (used by human visitors) logging on to the site with a high of 1,120 in a single day. Not bad numbers for a blog site with no advertisement.

   I also would like to thank Thomas Liechti (Action Force) and Bobby Mills (1000ydguy) for their outstanding contributions of materials and articles that they provide to myHitNews.com. And especially thanks to all those who have e-mailed and thanked us for the work that we do here. Hopefully, it’s only going to get better.

Our plan moving forward is to:

  • Bring you more pictures, video, interviews and in depth looks into Nebraska high school athletics, and its participants
  • Continue to provide a storehouse of information on the top athletes in the state.
  • Make the site more interactive for visitors to share their views.

   The last point is because we know, at times, our opinions and picks will make some uncomfortable and others down right mad, but we are going to tell it like we see it. And we will allow you to freely fire back.

   Right now myHitNews.com only covers football, boys basketball and track and field. Yes!  We would definitely like to cover other sports. So if you would like to contribute or know someone who might, send us an e-mail to myhitnews@yahoo.com

Coming Soon:

  • Class of 2010 Football Prospects Board revamp and capsules of the players to watch for in 2009.
  • Breakdown of the Class A Nebraska high school District Basketball Tournament.
  • myHitNews.com’s first  Omaha All-Metro Basketball Team.
  • A look into the Nebraska Cornhuskers instate football recruiting.
  • Nebraska track and field athletes to watch for in 2009.

We apologize for interuptions you may have while attempting to reach our site or trying to navigate through it during the next week or so as we make our switch.

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Only Three Omaha HS Basketball Teams Make Action Force’s Top Ten

Posted on February 17, 2009. Filed under: High School Basketball | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Class C Chadron Enters List At No. 9 Followed By Another Newcomer, Norfolk, At No. 10

By Will Cummings
myHitNews.com

  
   Alright’ y then! Only–three–Omaha teams in Action Force’s Top Ten! Wow! Talk about a wide open Class A title chase—here it is in living color, people.

   This week Action Force is definitely in tune with what it will take for one of these Class A teams to win the state title: Good play from the team’s big man. In a wide open fairly even race for the title like this, the one thing that traditionally separates the conquerors from the conquered is the play they get inside, down the stretch in district and state tournament time, from the big men.

   Class C Chadron basketball: What do you know, we talked about them last week as making the Contender list and this week here they are still undefeated and ranked at No. 9. What a wild year indeed! And after holding a Contender spot for the past several weeks, Norfolk has finally found its way to the Ten at No. 10.

    Hold on to your seats everybody, with only about a week left in the season, Class A is—totally– up for grabs.

 

Action Force’s Top 10

Nebraska High School Basketball Teams
(week ending February 15, 2009)top-ten-logo5

Rank, Team, (Record), Last Week’s Rank

1. Lincoln Southwest (18-2) 1

Heading into district play, the Silverhawks continue to flex their muscle atop the standings. Junior Jordan Tyrance a is one of the top athletes in the state and he is just one of the reasons why the Silverhawks are such an athletic team, but for Southwest to take home the state Class A crown they will need big man Jake Marvin to consistently play up to his full potential down the stretch run.

2. Omaha Creighton Prep (15-4) 3

The Jays are starting to get back to old form for Coach Luedtke. We all know about the great play the Jays get out of their guard position from Steffensmeir and Hook and the sharpshooting of Taylor Stormberg--those guys will have to continue to play good. However, come district and state play, senior post man Brett Potter will have to step up BIG TIME for the Jays to win the state championship.

3. Lincoln East (13-5) 4

They’ve hung around the bottom half of the Top Ten all year but coming off the big win over Omaha Central the Spartans are thriving under the senior leadership of Drew Sankey

4. Lincoln High (11-6) 5

A preseason favorite is just starting to scratch the surface of there potential—at just the right time. In order for Coach Uhing to get to the state tournament or bring home the trophy he’ll need his son, Pete, and Mike Partee to play lights out and get solid play off the bench.

5. Omaha Central (13-3) 3

Do yourself a favor: don’t let Central’s No.5 ranking fool you. Do not count out Coach Behrens‘ Eagles! This team is the most athletic team in the state, as all-state candidate Deverell Biggs, a junior, continues to lead the team while getting solid guard play out of Sean McGary and Ted Lampkin. The Eagles only inside presence, Paul Simms, will need to play his best basketball down the stretch to get the Eagles the 4-Peat

6. Lincoln Southeast (14-5) 7

With their win over Omaha Burke, Coach Jeff Smith proves again why he is one of the top coaches in the state. The Knights repeatedly played clock management and did a great job of milking the clock moving the ball and always getting an open look: This team can shoot too!!

7. Lincoln Northeast (12-5) 10

Still many are skeptical about the Rockets because of there inability to beat a top tier team–but they’ve been close. Rocket fans are hoping that breakout game comes in district play. And as long as they have Dol Kutey, don’t count them out!

8. Omaha Bryan (15-6) 8

The Bears thrive off their youth with Gullie, Jiech, Augustine, but they’ll need seniors Tiit Kuek and Zach Martin to play great to get them back into the state tournament.

9. Chadron (19-0) NR

sure they’re class C but they are undefeated and have beaten every team on their schedule to this point, and don’t forget about Elliot Eliason the Center who has gathered division offers already.

10. Norfolk (13-5) NR

Norfolk a relatively young team has been sitting just outside the top 10 all year. Now they finally enter at the 10 spot a week before district play.

Contenders

Bellevue East, Omaha Burke, Omaha Benson and Bellevue West

 

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Lincoln Silverhawks Overtake Central Eagles For No. 1 Spot

Posted on February 10, 2009. Filed under: High School Basketball | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |

Class C Chadron drawing Attention Alongside the Big Boys

Take Poll: Will a Lincoln or Omaha team take home Boys Class A tiltle this year?

By Will Cummings
my Hit News.com

   Sorry folks for the delay and the abbreviated version of this week’s Action Force’s Top Ten, but the young man had computer problems. Nevertheless, he did manage to create a little controversy–at least with me–on his new No. 1 pick.  I know Lincoln Southwest is good, but we are talkin’ about the three-time defending state champs, baby!  Gotta still give Central love at the top in my book–or at least until someone beats them come playoff time.   Unfortunately, the “B-Ball Wizard of  Burke” calls the shots on this one.

   Oh, and props to undefeated (18-0) Class C Chadron Cardinals, coached by Craig Nobiling, for getting some attention as being a contender in this week’s rankings.  I hear those boys can ball!

 

 Action Force’s Notes for Week Ending 2/8/09

Impressive wins over the weekend catapult the Silverhawks of Lincoln Southwest over previous No.1 Omaha Central–now No. 2– who had a lone win over Omaha Northwest this week.  No. 3 Creighton Prep continues to gain ground and inserts themselves back into the best team in the state conversation—a place where they started the season. If Hook, Martin, Potter, and Steffensmeir all play to their capabilities they are going to be a nearly impossible to stop come March.  No. 4 Lincoln East led by Drew Sankey sits at 12-5 and is climbing the ranks.  At No. 5 Coach Russ Uhing’s Links of Lincoln High led by his son Pete Uhing and Mike Partee continue to climb the totem pole by knocking off top teams. Ralston–a dangerous athletic team–rises back up to settle  in at the 6 spot. Lincoln Southeast, a team that I believe is the most versatile team in the state, takes a hit and drops to the 7 spot.  After a double digit loss to Omaha North, the Bryan Bears fall to No. 8.  Bell East comes homes at No.9, and the Rockets of Lincoln Northeast, led by senior standout Dol Kutey, fall twice this past week and slide all the way to the 10 spot.

 

Action Force’s Top 10
Nebraska High School Basketball Teams
(week ending February 8, 2009)
top-ten-logo4Rank, Team, (Record), Last Week’s Rank

1. Lincoln Southwest (16-2) 2

2. Omaha Central (13-2) 1

3. Creighton Prep (12-4) 3

4. Lincoln East (12-5) 9

5. Lincoln High (10-6) 8

6. Ralston (15-3) 10

7. Lincoln Southeast (12-5) 3

8. Bryan (14-6) 4

9. Bellevue East (12-8 ) 7

10. Lincoln Northeast (12-5) 6

Contenders

Burke, Norfolk and Chadron

 

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Fremont Bergan Is Still A Basketball Team To Fear In February

Posted on February 8, 2009. Filed under: High School Basketball | Tags: , , , , , , , , |

Defending State Champs Look for More in ’08/’09

Note: Action Force’s Top Ten for the Week ending 2/8/’09 will be released on Monday night.

By Bobby Mills
(1000ydguy)
Contributing Writer
my Hit News.com

   Consider this: Fremont Bergan recently had a 39 game winning streak ended at Council Bluffs St. Albert and they have not won a game since. Yep! They’ve lost 3 in a row and were eliminated in the first round of the Centennial Conference Tournament and they have NO home games left on their schedule for the remainder of this season.

Fremont Archbishop Bergan celebrates '08/'09 Boys Class D-1 Championship at Nebraska University Devany Center. (Photo by William Lauer/Lincoln Journal Star.)

Fremont Archbishop Bergan celebrates '07/'08 Boys Class D-1 Championship at Nebraska University Devaney Center. (Photo by William Lauer/Lincoln Journal Star.)

   Pretty bleak outlook for the defending state champions, right? After all, they lost one of the best players in the recent history of Nebraska high school basketball in Wes Eikmeier, plus an incredibly tight-knit group of seniors that had basically started together for the past THREE seasons. Moreover, when one adds up the points that the Knights are missing from last season’s seniors, you come up with 62 big ones per game. And add to that a late start because Bergan was in the C-2 state football final, and add to THAT they only had eight preseason practices before the start of the ’08/’09 basketball season –“Shall I second the motion for a bleak outlook? “

But not so fast, my friends! Hold the Tears

   Don’t hand the crying towel to Coach Chris Paulsen and this Fremont Bergan team just yet. This is a program that has won a hard-to-believe 70% of their games in the last NINE years competing as the smallest school in the rugged Centennial Conference. Putting this in perspective, Bergan went 27-0 and won a Class D-1 title playing teams like Boys Town, St. Cecilia, Wahoo Neumann, CB St. Alberts, and Ainsworth during the regular season.

   The Knights were in the same class with teams like Red Cloud, McCool Junction, Creek Valley, and Omaha Nation,  playing tough Class C-1 competition and WINNING 7 out of EVERY 10 GAMES!  Starting to realize what kind of program they have at 545 4th Avenue in Fremont? 

   Bergan  reeled off 12 straight W’s before falling in OT to a VERY good C.B St. Alberts squad. Following losses to C-1 rated Columbus Scotus and an athletic Boys Town team, the Knights have time to regroup and fix some things before entering the home stretch and a run at another state championship, this time in the C-2 ranks.

 The Players That Make Bergan Go

   The current Bergan team is led by 6-2 Senior Jim Wilmes,who is ranked in almost every category imaginable in C-2. Wilmes is averaging 16/ppg and is joined in the starting line-up by junior Pat Rasmussen and sophomore Johnny Spellerburg at the guards, and 6-3 senior John Melies and 6-5  junior Dereck White at the posts.  With this year’s team, Paulsen has had to mold Bergan into more of a full-court team than in the Eikmeier era. Funny thing is, this more “spread-out” offense has moved to the football field for Fremont Bergan and spurned great success. Funny how a BB program can spark a traditionally rich football program, but that’s what has transpired.

   The Knights still love to run on offense and pressure the opposition, whether it be full or half court. Anybody who has watched Knight’s basketball the past few years knows that their trademark is pressure defense and it takes very well-conditioned players to make it work—something Bergan has plenty of this season.

   Perhaps this current break in Bergan’s scheduling could prove to be the spark that the Green and Gold Crew needs to close out strong against remaining foes, Boys Town, Wahoo Neumann, Ravenna, and Oakland-Craig.

Valentines Day Shootout

   To say the game against Ravenna at the Events Center on Valentines Day is shaping up to be a dandy is a huge understatement. But the night before this highly anticpated contest, Fremont Bergan will play Bishop Neumann and then jets (they wish) to Grand Island for the 2:45 tip-off the next afternoon against Paul Beranek’sRavenna Bluejays.

   The Knights are currently sitting at No.1 in Class C-2 and the ‘Jays at No.5.…some kinda match-up it’s going to be on Valentines Day!

Good Coaching Goes a Long Ways

   No my friends, there best not be any tears shed for this current version of Fremont Archbishop Bergan basketball. One of the main reasons for thier past AND current success is the deeply entrenched excellent coaching skills of Chris Paulsen and his staff. It never seems to change with this bunch….always top notch hoops at Bergan–you can count on that one.  Those outstanding coaching skills are going to come in handy at district time with No. 2 ranked Elmwood-Murdock being in the same sub bracket as the Knights.

   It’s going to be a steep hill to scale for Fremont Bergan the rest of the way, but if you are Coach Paulsen and his squad and you can put together the kind of season they have thus far….I have a sneaking suspicion the Knights will be there when the curtain raises for the Class C-2 State Tournament Thursday, March 12th.

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What’s Wrong With Nebraska High School Football Players?

Posted on February 5, 2009. Filed under: College Football, High School Basketball | Tags: , , , , , , , |

Nebraska High School Football Players: Something Special

By Will Cummings
my Hit News.com 

    All right guys (and gals) you can get the Omaha World-Herald signing day notes by clicking on this link.  I will update the my Hit News ’09 Offers and Commitments board by Friday and put the class to bed.  Now it is all about the Class of 2010 Prospects.

   The high school class of 2009 had nine players that received D-1A offers but only seven signed on the dotted line. The two that bowed out were Vondrae Tostenson–reportedly headed to Iowa Western (JUCO)) and Eric Koehlmoos, who is headed to D-1AA South Dakota State.

   Only two Nebraskans in this class found their way to Lincoln on a scholarship: Cole Pensick and CJ Zimmerer. If that’s not disappointing enough–the Nebraska ’09 walk-on class is pretty small too.  What does this all say about: (1) the state of Nebraska high school football and (2) its relationship with the current Husker staff and (3) the future ramifications of it all?

2009
Recruited Nebraska Walk-ons
(as reported by Omaha World-Herald)


Nick Failla, Millard North

Ty Kildow, Millard South

Coline Kanne Millard West

Tyson Clark, Lincoln East

Tyrone Lewis, Lincoln North Star

Ron Kellogg, Omaha Westside

Mitch Hron, Schuyler

Corey Kraci, Schuyler

   Those are the questions I will be tackling in the next couple of weeks on my Hit News.com.  However, I will leave you with these thoughts: if the Huskers try to sell Nebraska high school kids on being “loyal” to their state program and forgoing scholarships to walk-on at NU “where is this staff’s loyalty to Nebraska kids when they only give two scholarships and let at least five of our best leave this state with D-1A offers from other programs–without an offer from the Huskers.”

   It cuts both ways!

   If Nebraska high school football players are so inferior, why ask them to walk-on?  If Nebraska high school football players are so inadequate, why have so many of them been star players for the Huskers?  And why have so many Nebraska walk-ons beat out highly touted–blue chip–scholarship athletes and become starters for the Huskers?

   Why?

mhn-football-logo

“!”

Something Special

Related Links: Remembering the Giants that played Nebraska High School Football

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Central Holds On To No.1 Spot

Posted on February 2, 2009. Filed under: High School Basketball, High School Track & Field | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Lincoln Teams Enter Top Ten In Mass

Get Latest on  ’09 Offers and Commitments Here 
Omaha Central’s Daryle Hawkins is a last minute offer and commit to University of Oregon.

By Will Cummings
my Hit News.com

  
   Central holds on to the No.1 spot this week despite their double-overtime loss to Lincoln High, who as a result breaks into the Top Ten at No.8.

   Good luck Omaha Metro teams in trying to hold on to the Class A crown –it looks like the Lincoln Metro is going to give ya a lot to worry about.  Five Lincoln teams are ranked in this week’s  Top Ten—and all of them are talented enough and well-coached enough to make strong runs in the playoffs.

   In fact: “Could we be looking at an all-Lincoln Class A finals this year?”

   Me thinks it just smells good for the City of Lincoln this year in Class A basketball for both the boys and the girls. After all, who is going to beat the amazing Purdue bound KK Houser’s 17-0 Lincoln Southeast team?

   Seems like Houser is hitting on all cylinders on the b-ball court, I wonder if it will carry over into track season, so that she is able to exact revenge on Omaha Central’s freshman phenomenon Laque Moen-Davis for taking her 100 meter hurdle All-Class Gold title at last year’s state meet.

 Track Season Just Around the Corner

   I digress, but I just can’t wait for track season to start—there is going to be some serious competition in many events this year for both the boys and girls. And KK Houser is among the cream of the crop on the track and one of the best female athletes to come out of the state of Nebraska.

   Check out our Hitblog YouTube video archive of track meets–including the Metro and State meets–to see some of the great talent that will be back on the Nebraska high school track and field in 2009 such as: KK Houser, Laque Moen-Davis, Anne Martin, Emily Wilkinson, Kohlman Adema-Schulte, Daryle HawkinsMichael Burrus, Jake Marousek, Stephon Washington, Cole Pensick, Josh Kage, Porter Groves, and many more.

 

Action Force’s Top 10top-ten-logo3Nebraska High School Basketball Teams
(week ending February 1, 2009)

Rank, Team, (Record), Last Week’s Rank

1. Omaha Central (12-2) 1

The Eagles slipped up in a unbelievable double-overtime thriller to the fast rising Links of Lincoln High. Eagles fans don’t get discouraged about the loss– Deverell Biggs, Paul Simms and company still are the leaders of the pack to win to the state title.

2. Lincoln Southwest (13-2) 5

The Silver Hawks continue to take care of business, behind the athletic duo of Jordan Tyrance and Drew Edmonds and the inside force of big man Jake Marvin. With every game the Silver Hawks are proving they are among the elite.

3. Omaha Creighton Prep (12-4) 6

The JR. Jays went 2-1 over the week but really got back to the style of play that coach Josh Luedtke loves. In their Saturday night win over previously 3rd ranked Lincoln Southeast, the Jays used great defense to slow the Knights’ potent offense. Over this past week, Taylor Stormberg, Caleb Steffensmeir and Cole Martin really turned in some good performances for the Jays.

4. Omaha Bryan Bears (13-4) 4

The Bears were runner-ups in the Bryan Cage Classic, but don’t count out coach Tim Cannon’s team just yet. Bryan has one of the best defensive teams in the state to go along with guys like Tiit Kuek, Galen Gullie, DK Augustineand Ben Imig–who can also light up the scoreboard.

5. Lincoln Southeast (11-4) 3

A tough loss to Creighton Prep set the Knights back a bit, but the Knights are a team I still like because of thieir ability to beat iteams in a variety of ways. They can go inside with solid inside play from Hagerbaumer and Hill, or outside with great play from sophomore sensation Derrius Vick.

6. Lincoln Northeast (12-3) 7

The Rockets keep on keepin’ on, don’t look past them! Dol Kutey is one of the best players in the state, and guard Tommy Johnson is coming on of late.

7. Bellevue East (11-7) 10

Coach Ryan’s squad rebounded from back to back losses to Central and Burke to go on to win the Bryan Cage Classic, but than slipped up against Norfolk.

8. Lincoln High (8-6) NR

Don’t look now but Coach Uhing’s Links are surfacing–and they look to be in state tournament form–after their thrilling win over Omaha Central. The key to that game was the play of senior guard Mike Partee. Partee is a guy many b-ball insiders have heard about but most fans and casual observers haven’t. Well, now you better start paying attention because Partee is the real deal.

9. Lincoln East (10-5) NR

Welcome back to the Top Ten rankings Drew Sankey and company, after riding the upset of Lincoln Southeast.

10. Ralston (14-3) 2

OK. So the Rams go 0-2 in the Cage Classic. You still can’t tell me this team is not talented and that they would not be able to compete in class A. I say that if the Rams played Class A talent game in and game out they would have been more prepared for the Classic. And if they were in Class A– this year–they would be among the top teams and in contention for a state title.

 

Contenders

Omaha Burke, Norfolk and Omaha Benson

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Powerful No. 1 Ralston Rams Headed to Grand Island To Face Hastings St Cecilia

Posted on January 27, 2009. Filed under: High School Basketball | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |

But Before They Meet, Rams Face a Meat Grinder of a Schedule

Click the link “Nebraska HS Class of 2009…” at the top of this page for latest on ‘o9 football offers & commitments.

Courtesy of Ralston High School

Ralston Rams Team Picture: Courtesy of Ralston High School.

By Bobby Mills
(1000ydguy)
Contributing Writer
my Hit News.com

   The top boys basketball team in the state of Nebraska (according to the Omaha World-Herald) is going to be in Central Nebraska—my neck of the woods—at the Heartland Events Center for a February 14th Valentines Day showdown against 11-1 Hastings St Cecilia.

   You want to talk about a Class B team that is battle tested? Mother of Mercy, this Ralston Rams bunch has scheduled just about everybody except Duke and it still has only one loss in 14 tries this season. But before these two meet on Valentines Day, things are going to get even tougher for the state’s numero uno team starting with their January 27thshowdown with Class A No. 4 Omaha Bryan at the Byan High Cage Classic.  The winner of that contest will move on to face the winner of #5 Bellevue East and No. 7 Creighton Prep on Thursday the 29th.  To end the week, the Rams will have a rematch against Class B No.2 Beatrice!

   Right about now, Coach Bill Heard is probably saying “Pass the antacid tablets, please.” Man, do these guys ever mix it up with the the big boys, or what?

   Ralston is a Class B basketball team that is currently sitting atop the Omaha World-Herald’s All-Class Top Ten ranking–ahead of Omaha Central, Lincoln SW, Bryan, Bell East, Prep…..you name ’em, they are ahead of them. This is the same team that lost close to 38 points worth of scoring and 12 boards from last year’s Class A State Tournament Team, but Bill Heard was not overly concerned due to the fact the talented Smith brothers, Greg and Dwight, returned for this current squad.

 The Smith Brothers

   The 6-foot-6 Greg Smithis arguably the top high school basketball prospect in this state, and next season he will headed to Colorado State on a full ride scholarship, where he’ll join Ainsworth sharpshooter, Jesse Carr.

   The older Smith is averaging just over 20ppg this season afte18.5 his Junior season, and nearly 14 as a Sophomore. Junior brother Dwight is hitting at a clip of 15 per game, after averaging 16 last year and 12.5 as a Freshman. Dwight and Greg also are currently ranked No. 1 and No. 2 respectively in rebounding in Class B. Both have some serious hops my friends.

   This Ram team can flat out shoot the ball with deadly accuracy too. Dwight Smith will drain the ball about 6 out of every10 tries and 5-11 Junior Tony Grant is shooting treys at a 42% clip.

 Coach Heard Breaks It Down

   Coach Bill Heard explained that except for the Smith boys, the other current players really didn’t get much playing time a year ago.Heard stated “What they did get last year was to practice against really good players every day who played hard in practice, as well as in games.” “It rubs off on those guys and makes them learn to compete”.

   You could go into a long litany about the starting five for Ralston, but thus far Heard has used at least FIVE different starting combinations…….must be nice. They truly go TEN DEEP, with Tyler Pleiss, Romeo Agnew, and with Andy Smolinski always figuring into the mix somehow.

 Battle Tested Tough

   The offense is averaging about 77 points a game and that’s against some pretty salty opponents. They have faced five out-state teams and only Kansas City Sumner Academy has pinned a loss on the Rams– that loss coming in December at the tough Blue Valley Shoot-Out in Kansas City.

   Last week, Heard’s crew beat highly touted Harlan, Iowa., then swept South Sioux City and Beatrice to win the River Cities Conference Tournament–typical week for the Rams.

    Against Beatrice, they “took the air out of the ball,” a tactic that can really frustrate the best of teams around. I have seen them run this drill and you don’t want to get caught up in trying to chase them around when they employ it.

   On defense, they apply as much pressure as possible, and that may mean man, or that may mean zone-just depends on the situation.

 State Title On the Horizon

   Ralston has come a long ways in 50 years. According to a 1959 NSAA listing, the school had only 105 boys, and now has grown to a combined boy/girl total of 804. The Rams last won a State title in 1964 when they beat the now defunct Omaha Holy Name 58-52.

    The 2008/2009 season may be ripe for the Ralston Rams to collect a state championship trophy–it’s been far too long for this current group to let this one slip by!  And if the chance to win this title depends on how “battle tested” this Ralston unit is by the time Districts roll around…………they may be blasting “We Are The Champions” when it’s all said and done.

 

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Action Force’s Top Ten: Central Earns No. 1 Spot With Impressive Weekend Victories

Posted on January 26, 2009. Filed under: High School Basketball | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Get the Latest Information on Nebraska HS Class of ’09 Football Prospects’ Offers and Commitments Here

By Will Cummings
my Hit News.com

   This week Central, the three-time defending state champions, has– earned–the right to be considered the the best team in Nebraska. 

   It’s kind of odd that a program that has won the last three Class A`state titles would be in the position of having to wait so long to be recognized as the best team in the state. But that is exactly the circumstances that head coach Eric Behrens’ one-loss Eagles have found themselves in since the start of the season.  However, don’t blame us (media  types) for the slight.  I mean how can we gloss over the fact that those three titles came with Ronnell Grixby and Chris Griffin and Josh Jones on the team–all of whom are gone!  

   This was supposed to be a rebuilding year, wasn’t it?  Or is it that most of us overlooked or discounted the most important element of all in assessing the Eagles’ ability to contend for the title this year: Coaching. 

   Oh, the Eagles have had some great talent in the past, but Behrens and his staff are evidently overlooked when it comes to the reason for their past successes.  I would suggest that going forward to never discount an Eric Behrens coached team–it should be pretty obvious by now that the man is very much on top of the game and that he must have some pretty good staff around him too.

   Despite this weekend’s good-natured taunts and jeers directed against Action Force and my Hit News.com by Central fans–undoubtedly displeased with his lack of respect in his rankings–Central’s performances have earned them recognition from Action Force as being the best basketball team in the state of Nebraska.

   At least for this week.

Action Force’s Top 10top-ten-logo6Nebraska High School Basketball Teams
(week ending January 25 2009)

Rank, Team, (Record) Last Week’s Rank

1. Omaha Central (11-1) 2

The Eagles went 2-0 this weekend and the biggest win of the two came against Bell, a game that I was fortunate enough to attended. Central’s play, style, depth and manner of victory was convincing enough for me to move them past the Rams—after all, this team has won 3 state titles in a row. Right?

2. Ralston (12-1) 1

The Rams are a very, very good team! We’ll see at the Cage Classic this week, if they can maintain their high ranking. If you want to see good hoops come on out to Bryan High School this week Greg Smith and Dwight Smith are both D-1prospects and don’t forget Tony Grant, Tyler Pleiss and Karon Crawford.

3. Lincoln Southeast (11-2 ) 3

The Knights are a team that can beat you in a variety of ways, inside and out, or outside and in. You pick. UNO commit Matt Hagerbaumeris an impressive finesse big man and soph Derrius Vick is going to continue to make noise over time.

4. Omaha Bryan (12-3) 4

Coach Tim Cannon’s Bears had their time in the spotlight but their loss to current No.1 Central set them back some. But don’t worry Gullie, Agustine, Imig, Kuek, and Jiech are still fully capable of winning a state crown. Remember, it’s not what you do now it’s what you can do come state tournament time.

5. Lincoln Southwest (12-2) 5

The Silverhawks continue to linger. around and be counted among the top teams in the state. My basketball guru friend Dave Shillinglaw–host of Nebraska High School Hoops radio show which airs at 7:00 p.m. every Wednesday on AM station 1620 the Zone –is a huge fan of what the very athletic Silverhawks are capable of doing down the stretch, and I don’t blame him. The athletic duo of Jordan Tyrance and Drew Edmonds along with the rest of the Hawks may be enough of a force to get them a state title.

6. Omaha Creighton Prep (10-3) 7

The return of senior star Alex Hook has brought back major leadership. Add that to the fact he is just a great overall basketball player. Nick Davis and Cole Marten need to continue to play well for the Jays to make it to Lincoln.

7. Lincoln Northeast (10-3) 8

The fighting Dol Kuteycontinues to make noise. Message to Class A start paying attention to the Rockets and Dol Kutey–this is a good team and very capable of putting together a end-of-the-season run to the title.

8. Omaha Benson ( 9-4) 10

Tyler Cerveny’s Bunnies are somewhat quietly surfacing as a legit title contender with lots of guard firepower with senior Stevelle Burns and sophomore CJ Carter and the recent hot streak of sophomore Cal McCoy. All of which is making the Bunnies a very dangerous foe.

9. Omaha Burke (8-5) NR

The Bulldogs are back in the Top 10 after putting together 2 wins in a row for the first time since the Holiday Tournament with wins over last week’s Top 10 No. 6 Bellevue East and Papio South. Junior sharpshooter Ray McGaugh continues to light up the score board and sophomore point guard Adonis Hill continues to do an impressive job of being the Bulldogs’ floor general, while senior Devon Simonds is starting to find his groove.

10. Bellevue East (9-6) 6

Tough losses to Omaha Burke and Omaha Central this weekend for the Chieftains, but remember they still have Jarell Crayton. Don/t you all remember what he did down the stretch last year?

Contenders:

Norfolk, Lincoln High and Beatrice

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Ralston Rams: No.1 HS Basketball Team In Nebraska

Posted on January 20, 2009. Filed under: High School Basketball | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Action Force Taps the Class B Ralston Rams as Best Hoops Team In State

Vote in our poll below to pick the winner between a Central vs. Ralston contest

By Will Cummings
my Hit News.com

   My, Oh my! Say it ain’t so! A Class B team is the best basketball team in the state?

   Well, despite the fact that Omaha Central has really impressed as of late and they only have suffered one loss this season–let alone being the reigning back to back to back state champs–Action Force says the Ralston Rams are just that much better than Central.

   Sounds like some folks just don’t have respect for the Eagles.

   May the debate begin.

Below is Action Force’s Top Ten for week ending January 19:

Note: This is the first week that Action Force decided to convert the poll to an all-class format.

Action Force’s Top 10 top-ten-logo2

Nebraska High School Basketball Teams
(week ending January 18, 2009)

Rank, (Team, Record), Last Week’s Rank

1. Ralston (10-1) NR
The Smith brothers. That’s all you really need to know. Just kidding, but really, Greg and Dwight–both division one prospects–are leading this team with the help of senior point man Tyler Pleiss and slashing guard Karon Crawford.W e will all get to see how Coach Bill Hurd’s Rams stack up against the best of class A at the Bryan Cage Classic But let me tell ya “Ralston is the real deaal!”
2. Omaha Central (9-1) 4
After dismantling previously No.1 Omaha Bryan, the Eagles move into the top spot in Class A, despite all the questions about them not having a solid post game they continue to roll. Their only loss this season was a 1 point loss to Burke at the Metro Holiday Tournament Teddy Lampkin is emerging big time to become one of the top players in the state, Deverell Biggs continues to do his thing and junior Bryan transfer Sean McGary dropped 15 points against his former team–things are clicking for coach Eric Beherens’ Eagles
3. Lincoln Southeast (9-2) 2
The Knights, along with Omaha Bryan continue to be a team I like and would pick to play for the state Class A title come March. Lincoln Southeast is one of the most balanced teams in the state: because they feature great guard play to go along with strong inside post play. It makes for s a lethal combination with the sharpshooting of Price; the slashing, strong finisher play of sophomore Derrius Vickand the inside play of UNO commit Matt Hagerbaumer. The knights are as good a pick as anyone to take it all this year.
4. Omaha Bryan (9-3) 1
The previous number 1 Bears ran into a near impossible situation this weekend, playing Omaha Central at the Eagles’ Nest. Nevertheless, Bryan is still a top contender for the crown, as sophomore DK Augustine continues to play well after scoring 22 against Central. Coach Tim Cannon will regroup his Bears as its a tough road ahead with the Bryan Cage classic coming up
5. Lincoln Southwest (11-2) 3
The Silverhawks, who have split games against their rivals,the Knights of Lincoln southeast, are getting good play out Drew Edmonds and junior Jordan Tryance. However, they will need Tyrance to carry a much larger load down the road in order for their team to battle for a state title.
6. Bellevue East (9-4) 5
All Nebraska center Jarell Craytoncontinuer to put up all state numbers for coach Jason Ryan’s squad. Evan Williams had a good weekend for the Chieftains. But Williams, Tyson Reevesand Joel Butts will need to play their best down the stretch to take the load off Crayton. Bell East travels to Omaha Burke om Tuesday for a good Metro Conference match up
7.  Creighton Prep (9-3) 4
“Welcome back Alex Hook.” Over the weekend the Jays got a good win over the rising Benson Bunnies. Cole Martin continues to improve his game, but, Coach Luedtke will need great shooting out of Taylor Stormberg and good ball handling out of Caleb Steffensmeir to win some big games and battle for a title.
8. Lincoln Northeast (8-3) NR
The scary team towards the bottom of the top 10–they are lurking. I have said multiple times how dangerous they are when Dol Kutey is rolling. Down the stretch they will need solid performances from Johnson and Wade, in order to keep teams at bay and to help break up double and triple team coverage on Kutey.
9. Lincoln East (7-4) 10
The Spartans continue to hang around in the top !0, but they will have their work cut out for them down the stretch run with some more talented teams above them. Senior team leader Drew Sankey was, is, and will be key to their success– they go as he goes. 
10. Omaha Benson (7-4) 8
Despite a loss this week to Creighton Prep, Benson is a team I believe to be “growing more dangerous by the day” with outstanding defense and leadership from senior Stevelle Burns and other solid guard play out of CJ Carter and Cal McCoy. The Bunnies are emerging for Coach Tyler Cerveny, who said, a while back when the Bunnies were struggling, they would get there and that their best days were definitely ahead of them.

 

 Contenders

Omaha Burke, Beatrice and North Platte

  
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Scottsbluff Bearcats: They Can Hoop Out West Too!

Posted on January 17, 2009. Filed under: High School Basketball |

Senior Tim McDavid Leads Scottsbluff On a Quest for Some Gold In Lincoln

By Bobby Mills
(1000ydguy)
Contributing Writer
my Hit News.com

 
Tim McDavid, 6-2, Senior Guard

tim-mcdavid-scottsbluff

A Place Far, Far Away

   In an age where cyberspace has linked even the most far away places, there are folks in the Eastern Sector of Nebraska that just don’t know much about Scottsbluff—let alone its  high school basketball team.  After all Scottsbluff is located 430 miles away from Omaha, 377 from Lincoln and some 280 or so miles away from Grand Island.

   Only a sprinkling of us may have known that Scottsbluff was founded in 1899 and named after a man named Hiram Scott, who was left to die near Laramie’s Fork by members of an expedition he was leading in 1829 (nice people). And an even more diminutive group may know that the average winter temperature in Scottsbluff is 24 degrees. However, if the red hot Scottsbluff Bearcats continue to perform the way they have thus far this season,  many people may be googling the town and the team to learn a little more about them.

   This past December, Scottbluff’s young head coach Tony Siske and his current forces began to open up some Nebraskan hoop fans’ eyes by nabbing 3rd place at the Nebraska Junior College Tournament in Sterling, Colorado.  Then on New Year’s Eve, the Class B team sent a clear message to all by capturing the championship title at the Greater Nebraska Athletic Conference Tournament against predominantly Class A competition–beating Class A  Norfolk in the final 45-41. 

There Is Power In the West, People

   Currently, C-1 Chadron is rated the number 8 All-Class team in Nebraska and Siske’s Scottsbluff Bearcats are ranked #8 in Class B, right behind Sidney.

   Two years ago, the Bearcats advanced to the semifinals at the State Tournament before falling to Omaha Skutt. That season, 6-2 sophomore guard Tim McDavid , who just recently scored his 1,000th career point, wowed the state tourney crowd with his hops and athleticism and now he is one of the senior leaders of the current 12-3 team.

  This Scottsbluff crew appears poised to make a run at getting back to Lincoln.  One major road block will be facing Sidney back-to-back in less than a month and possibly a 4th time this season if the two meet up in the district final–a thought that doesn’t thrill Siske.  But I have a hunch that he an his players can handle it.

Coach’s Thoughts

   Tony Siske offered these thoughts to me on his team,

“Our strengths are in defense and versatility. We have a lot of guys who can play different positions and we can we can create match-up problems.”

   Coach Siske continued sharing his impression of his team by adding “Our players have done a great job of working hard in practice and playing as a team. Our seniors get a lot of credit for our success because of their leadership and their work ethic.”

   The Coach was quick to credit his seniors for setting an example by pushing each other to get better. “They play very well together and are very unselfish,” said Siske.

   The one Bearcat victory that  grabs your immediate attention is the Greater Nebraska Athletic Conference Tournament final win over Class A Norfolk—IN the Panthers own  house. 

   Almost every game this Scottsbluff team plays, except for Gering requires a long road trip. Therefore, the trip to Norfolk was not something new–just part of the road gig.  So don’t expect  for long road trips to bother this team.
 
   Now, it is possible that both Siske’s Bearcats and Sidney could end up making the Class B field in Lincoln when March rolls around. That would certainly reinforce the fact that “The West” is a force to be reckoned with.

The Secret Is Out

   Unfortunately for them, the Scottsbluff boys basketball team won’t be able to sneak up on anybody east of Grand Island these days– the secret is out on this talented group led by the nifty senior Tim McDavid, who can almost jump to the moon.  And that just may be where the Scottsbluff Beacrats are headed–where the sky’s the limit!

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  • my Hit News.com

    Nebraska High Schoolhoops7Top 25 Prospects '08/'09

    By Action Force

    crystallogout17

    Sponsor: Hit Highlights Inc.

    1. Jarell Crayton, 6-7, SR, C, Bellevue East

    2. Gregg Smith, 6-6, SR, SF/PF/SG, Ralston

    3. Elliot Elliason, 6-11, JR, C, Chadron

    4. Dwight Smith, 6-3, JR , PG/SG, Ralston

    5. Tyler Evans, 6-2, JR, SG/PG, Waverly

    6. Mike Gessell, 6-0, FR, PG, South Sioux City

    7.. John Karhoff, 6-8, SR, PF/C, Creighton Prep.

    8. Vondrae Tostenson, 6-5, SR, PF, Millard South

    9. Matt Hagerbaumen, 6-7, SR, SF, Lincoln Southeast

    10. Stevelle Burns, 6-0, SR, PG, Benson

    11. Deverell Biggs, 6-1, JR, SG/PF, Omaha Central

    12. Caleb Steffensmeir, 5-11, JR, PG, Creighton Prep

    13. Jordan Tyrance, 6-4, SF/PF, JR, Lincoln Southwest

    14. Trevor Meinke, 6-0, JR, PG, Beatrice

    15. Scottie Davis, 6-5, JR, SF/PF, Omaha Burke

    16. Derrius Vick, 6-0, SO, PG, Lincoln Southeast

    17. Ted Lampkin, 5-11, SO, PG, Omaha Central

    18. Jerad Warner, 6-6, JR, PF/C Omaha Gross

    19. Dol Kutey, 6-6, SR, C, Lincoln Northeast

    20. Ben Imig, 6-0, JR, SG/PG, Bryan

    21. Galen Gullie, 5-7, SR, PG, Bryan

    22 Pete Uhing, 6-5, SR, PF/C, Lincoln High

    23 Adonis Hill, 5-10, SO, PG, Omaha Burke

    24. Mike Dentlinger, 6-6, JR, PF/C, Millard North

    25. DK Augustine, 6-4, SO, C, Omaha Bryan

  • Action Force’s Top Ten

    top-ten-logo4

    Nebraska High School

    Basketball Teams

    (Week ending 02-15-09)

    Team ,(Record) Last wk rank

    1.

    Lincoln SW (18-2) 1

    2.

    Creighton Prep (15-4) 3

    3.

    Lincoln East(13-5) 4

    4.

    Lincoln High (11-6) 5

    5.

    Omaha Central (13-3) 3

    6.

    Lincoln Southeast(14-5) 7

    7.

    Lincoln Northeast(12-5) 103

    8.

    Omaha Bryan (15-6) 8

    9.

    Chadron (19-0) NR

    10.

    Norfolk (13-5) NR Contenders: Bellevue East, Omaha Burke, Omaha Benson, Bellevue West

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