The high school season tipped off last week throughout the state of Wisconsin and with action continuing to intensify we take a look at the happenings like McDonald’s All-American candidate Kevin Looney and more in our first edition of the Wisconsin News and Notes this winter…

HEADLINES
(1)  LOONEY TAKES AIM AT MCDONALD’S ALL-AMERICAN GAME AND MORE
UCLA secured a commitment from one of the coveted prospects nationally in Milwaukee Hamilton senior forward Kevon Looney last month but there’s more for the soaring forward to take aim at this season as he is a frontrunner for McDonald’s All-American and Jordan Brand All-American games given his top 10 national status.  Looney is easily one of the premiere talents in the country and he continues to deliver on the court with ease while showcasing a high level of character and dominant production.  Equipped with class, grades, and maturity on and off the court, Looney is the face of basketball in the state of Wisconsin this season and justifiably so.  With the departure of David Burrell to prep school Milwaukee Hamilton will look to Looney even more this season and the senior forward looks more than capable of providing as his debut of 38 points on Friday gave evidence of.  Look for defenses to double and triple team Looney all season long as he takes aim at state player of the year honors and the prestigious post season All-Star games while focusing on helping Milwaukee Hamilton try and get to Madison in the process.  

(2)  GERMANTOWN LOOKS FOR 3-PEAT
With two straight undefeated seasons capped by state championships in Madison already on the resume of Germantown the Warhawks take aim at a third consecutive championship this season.  Gone is dominant big man Luke Fischer who now makes the Big Ten his address courtesy of Indiana.  While the production of Fischer is now in the past, Germantown still takes the court with a very deep and talented group of players led by senior lead guard and Buffalo commit Lamonte Bearden who can take over the game with his playmaking and scoring.  Without the toughness of a Josh Monogan/Zak Showalter led backcourt or the big numbers of a Luke Fischer, Germantown will need to have all their pieces come together and it will be up to Bearden to be the catalyst for a deep group that includes his brother Brian Bearden, Evan Wesenberg, Jon Averkamp, Jake Showalter, Dearionte Hudson, etc.  The perimeter play will be the strength for Germantown this season and they will need to bring it each and every night if they expect to live up to the expectations of their predecessors each of the past two seasons.

(3)  THE STONE FACTOR
While Germantown has garnered most of the attention the past couple of years, Dominican has captured back to back state championships as well behind departed lead guard Duane Wilson Jr. and powerful junior center Diamond Stone.  With Wilson now at Marquette Dominican will look to Stone even more and you can expect some huge numbers for the highly coveted big man despite being double and triple teamed nightly.  The lead guard responsibilities will now shift to junior Tywon Bressler Jr. who is more than capable of providing solid production and floor leadership alongside Stone as Dominican takes aim at a third consecutive state title. 

(4)  EMERGING 2015 CLASS
While you can expect Kevon Looney and Diamond Stone to take most of the headlines this season, a very deep and strong junior class is continuing to emerge in the state of Wisconsin and you can expect many of them to play a significant role in how things play out throughout the season.  Rice Lake’s Henry Ellenson is a top 50 national prospect while names like Cody Schwartz (West De Pere), Matt Heldt (Neenah), Jaylen Key (Homestead), Levi Bradley (Milwaukee Pius XI), Nick McGlynn  (Stoughton), Nick Noskowiak (Sun Prairie), Tywon Bressler Jr. (Dominican), Jevon Smith (Milwaukee Lutheran), Joe Binyoti (Milwaukee King), Brevin Pritzl (De Pere), Kyle Monroe (Ashwaubenon), Romeo Bouie (Racine St. Catherine’s), Garrison Goode (Marquette), Miles Sigh (Whitefish Bay), Mason Domask (Waupun), Jemell Posey (Milwaukee King), Darrell Riley (Milwaukee North), James Batemon (Milwaukee Riverside), Dallas Polk-Hilliard (Messmer), Jacob Jurss (Sheboygan Lutheran), Diamonte Freeman (Milwaukee King), Brandon Eckford (Milwaukee Bay View), Jerome Cummings (West Allis Central), Brandon Key (West Allis Central), etc. are just a few talented junior who are virtually guaranteed to make their play be heard this season. 

RANKINGS
(1) Germantown
Two straight undefeated seasons capped by state chips have the Warhawks firmly seated at the top until someone is able to take them down.

(2) Brookfield Central
The Lancers came so very close last season in a matchup with Germantown and led by Vanderbilt bound sharpshooting senior Riley Lachance Central returns a group that includes lead guard Brad Newman, athletic wing Caleb Mortag, nuts and bolts big man Elijah Goodman etc.  The scoring and perimeter shooting of Lachance will garner most of the attention and highlights for this group throughout the year but there is nice depth and high expectations in Brookfield for this team who on paper looks to be a serious challenger to the Warhawks repeat state title aspirations.

(3) Milwaukee King
The Generals always brings excellent intensity and effort and this season will likely be no different and that alone puts them in City Conference Championship consideration each and every season.  This year’s team will look to fill the shoes of departed lead guard Austin Malone-Mitchell but junior transfer Joe Binyoti is a talented replacement for a team that will also lean heavily on names like Jemell Posey, Curtis Weather Jr., Chris Howell, Marquis Turner, and Diamonte Freeman amongst others.  Look for King to start to gel as a team after Christmas the Generals will once again be a tough out once the state tournament comes around.

(4) Madison Memorial
A solid roster on paper for Memorial makes them a team to pay close attention to this season but the play of senior big man Darrlyn Willis will be key for them if they have state championship aspirations this season.  Willis has some nice size and solid potential but he will need to consistently produce for Memorial to help them reach their potential.  A solid cast of players will take the court with Willis in Shareef Smith, Courtland Cuevas, Tyler Lindquist, etc.  Time will tell with this team but if they can come together and get solid and consistent production from their key components Memorial will be a tough task for anyone by season’s end.

(5) Dominican
The two-time defending state champions from Dominican will look to replace departed senior Duane Wilson Jr.’s shoes and they’ll start by leaning heavily on coveted big man Diamond Stone, regarded by some as the top junior in the country.  With dominant interior production expected nightly by Stone the Knights will also look to junior lead guard Tywon Bressler Jr. to guide the ship while names like Austin Moutry, Jack Jelicic, Michael Ferrici, Jake Bennett, etc. will also play key roles this season.

Others of Note – Milwaukee Hamilton, Oshkosh North, Milwaukee Vincent, Milwaukee Riverside, Neenah, Sun Prairie, De Pere, West De Pere, Rice Lake, Wisconsin Lutheran, Stevens Point, Homestead, Brown Deer, Milwaukee Pius XI, New Berlin Eisenhower, Racine Case, Pewaukee, etc.

GAME(S) OF THE WEEK
Milwaukee King @ Whitefish Bay – Tuesday November 26, 2013
The Generals debut a solid and deep roster looking for respect while Bay hits the court led by senior guard Joe Sherburne and junior wing Miles Sigh.  Expect a contrast of styles here as King will bring their trademark ball pressure defensively and look to generate easy baskets for the likes of Jemell Posey, Diamonte Freeman, etc. while Bay will look to execute on the offensive end with perimeter shooting of Sherburne, slashing of Sigh, solid play from junior wing Isaiah Johnson and interior contributions from senior big man Christian Lane.

Milwaukee Vincent vs. Racine Case @WLC – Friday November 29, 2013
The V-House hits the court on Friday without departed senior Deonte Burton who now resides at Marquette University but Vincent has some pieces to their attack this season and senior forward Marcus White seems primed for a huge year.   Emerging forward Brandon Cooper and juniors Malik Brown and Dominique Hoskins will also play key roles for Vincent who also boast talented freshman lead guard Melvin Lee and sophomore guard Josh Russell Jr. in their attack.  Case will counter with senior forward D’Angelo Jackson and juniors Darion King and Tyrese Pinson also serve as key pieces in the Case attack.  Both teams seem evenly matched on paper with White and Jackson headlining each roster.  Should be a good one on Friday. 

UPCOMING EVENTS
2013 NY2LA SPORTS CLASSIC DETAILS
The annual NY2LA Sports Classic will take place on December 14, 2013 at Homestead High School in Mequon, Wisconsin.  The high school hoops showcase will feature another stellar lineup of teams with the following schools slated to appear:  Germantown, Dominican, Brookfield Central, Milwaukee Hamilton, Milwaukee Riverside, Neenah, Homestead, Marquette University High School, Milwaukee Vincent, Brown Deer, Wisconsin Lutheran, Pewaukee, West Allis Central, Racine Horlick, Milwaukee North, and Brookfield Academy.  For more information CLICK HERE

UPCOMING TOURNAMENT
HOLIDAY HOOPFEST - JANUARY 4-5, 2013
BOYS 3RD-8TH GRADE TEAMS
MILWAUKEE, WI
The annual middle school tournament will enter its 4th year and will once again feature some of the top middle school teams in the Midwest. The tournament offers a 3 game guarantee while using a pool play and single elimination playoff format. There are multi-team discounts available for programs and the tournament is covered online by NY2LASPORTS.COM and GENERATIONNEXTBASKETBALL.COM.  For additional details and registration information on the 2014 Holiday Hoopfest CLICK HERE

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