MENOMONEE FALLS BOYS BASKETBALL
The Indians remained sharp over the holiday break, claiming their third straight victory with an impressive 78-51 nonconference decision over Kenosha Tremper on Dec. 30.
'They're a much improved team, but the previous day, they had to play a postponed game that started late, and I think they came in with a little bit of heavy legs,' said Indian coach Ben Farley. 'We did some good things, though. In the last five minutes of the first half, we took a 5-point lead and stretched it out to 15. From there, we were able to build a huge lead in the second half.'
With the win, the Indians improved to 6-3 overall. They hosted Franklin on their parents night in another nonconference game Tuesday, Jan. 5, and then will travel to Wauwatosa East at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Jan. 8, for a Greater Metro Conference contest. The Red Raiders have been uneven this season but beat state-ranked Cedarburg in a recently-held WBY Shootout contest.
'We're going to work to get better,' Farley said.
Falls stretched the halftime lead to 43-27 and then coasted to the finish line in the road game.
Point guard Bryce McMurtrycontinued his recovery from a back injury a few weeks ago with 21 points. But in a continuation of an athletic school year where he has struggled to remain healthy, McMurtry fought back an allergic reaction that had him sneezing 'every 10 seconds,' according to Farley.
'But he never asked to come out,' Farley said.
And it didn't affect his shooting, as McMurtry hit five 3-pointers on the night.
Justin Gruberhit three 3-pointers en route to a 19-point effort, while post player Matt Henningsenadded 18.
Farley said Gruber and Henningsen continue to get better and better as the season goes along.
'This was good,' Farley said. 'We didn't want too much down time (over holiday break). I'm not quite sure what the perfect way of doing this is, but this (the break) came out pretty well. The kids are competing hard in practice.'
Zack Szohrfinished a pressure-packed regular season unbeaten in 2014-15.
He won't have that monkey on his back this winter, as in a tightly contested match, he lost 5-4 in the 106-pound final of the 65-team Oshkosh on the Water tournament to off-season training partner Brady Koontz of Stevens Point on Dec. 30.
'They wrestle together all the time for the World Gold (club wrestling) team,' said Warhawk coach and Szohr's father, Jeff. 'They've done that a million times. Zack usually has the upper hand, but Brady got up 5-4 after the second period and then was able to ride him out in the third period.
'I think this is the best thing that could happen to him. He's still confident, but he knows he's got a lot of things to improve upon.'
Szohr's runner-up finish led the Warhawks to a 15th-place finish in the tournament with 148 points as Hortonville won with 348.
Szohr (22-1 overall) beat West De Pere (pin), Stevens Point Pacelli (pin), West Allis Hale (technical fall) and Hortonville (5-4 decision) opponents before he fell to Koontz (17-1 record).
He was one of seven Germantown wrestlers to make it to the second day in the hotly-contested event.
Dominique Bennett at 285 had the next best effort, going 6-2 overall after losing his second-round match to record a ninth-place finish. All six of his wins were by pin.
'He's working harder and harder on his cardio so he can stay in there and keep fighting longer,' said coach Szohr. 'He wanted to make some time (at the end of practice) to lift weights (for football), but now he's working harder on his conditioning.'
Bennett is 17-8 on the season.
Mason Wheelerat 138 (19-8) went 4-4 in the tournament to take 12th. All three of his final losses were by tough decisions.
Almost everyone of the Germantown wrestlers won at least one match. Of special note were Kevin Tamboli at 113 (3-2, 16-6); Eric Abelat 120 (2-2, 11-9); Jimmy Nguyenat 132 (3-2, 17-5); Tommy Nelsonat 152 (4-2, 12-10); Anthony Brooksat 160 (2-2, 11-10); Landon Valentaat 182 (3-2, 12-8); Devin Holtat 195 (2-2, 13-8); and David Nillesat 220 (2-2, 16-7).
'We had a little mixed emotions about things,' said coach Szohr. 'We were looking to dominate in certain areas, but we did pretty well overall.'
The Warhawks will get the experienced Waymon McNeal back this week after his recovery from a thumb injury. They will be at the West Bend Duals on Saturday, Jan. 9.
MENOMONEE FALLS/GERMANTOWN/HAMILTON BOYS SWIMMING
The Indians ended their holiday break with a solid seventh-place finish in the Cedarburg Bulldog Invitational on Jan. 2.
The local co-op finished with 140 points for its spot in the 16-team field as Franklin edged the hold Bulldogs, 332-329, for the title.
Shawn Brownhad the best individual finishes with sixths in the 50-yard freestyle (23.2 seconds) and in the 100 free (50.85). Keegan Donlen earned the same spot in the 100 breaststroke (1:07.14).
Other finishes of note included the following: diving: Turner Velle, 11th (296.05 points); 200 medley relay: Conner Cameron, Donlen, Ryan Ciolkoszand Brown, seventh (1:48.57), Josh Ebner, Jacob Poulson, Jason Hunt and Dayne Gramoll, 12th (1:56.32); 200 individual medley: Ebner, 11th (2:15.25); 200 free relay: Nick Omer, Gramoll, Jack Ragland, Bennett Jaskaniek, 11th (1:42.03); 100 backstroke: Cameron, eighth (1:01.65); and 400 free relay: Omer, Ebner, Donlen, and Brown, 12th (3:36.64).
— Compiled by Steven L. Tietz