UWFox Men’s Hoop Team Wins First-Ever Conference Championship! Lady Cyclones Finish Runner-Up
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The University of Wisconsin-Fox Valley men's basketball team defeated UW-Waukesha 64-59 on Sunday, February 27, to capture the campus’ first ever Wisconsin Collegiate Conference (W.C.C.) basketball championship. The UWFox men’s team ended its season with a phenomenal 26 and 1 won-loss record! The lone loss came at UW-Sheboygan on November 10 when the Cyclones lost 91-90 in overtime.
According to Coach Lee Rabas, “As has been the case all year for the Cyclones men, different guys stepped up to make plays when they were needed. Travis Puyleart scored 18 points (including 4 of 5 shooting from the 3-point range) and Lucas Schultz had 10 points to lead the UWFox men
“Jake Coenen scored nine points and played stellar defense for 40 minutes and Phil Landua grabbed seven rebounds. Both players, along with Joe Dachelet and Kyle Bloedow, close out perhaps the most successful two-year careers in UWFox history as they finished a combined 48-7 in that time span.
“UWFox shot nine of 20 from beyond the three-point arc and got stops on defense when they needed to in the final minute. Korey Jagiello took a charge with just under 30 seconds remaining, and full-court pressure forced a [UW-Waukesha] Cougars turnover with 5.4 seconds remaining with the Cyclones nursing a three point lead.
“Schultz stepped to the line with 3.8 seconds left and calmly drained two free-throws that provided the final scoring margin. Christian Krah's two free-throws gave UWFox the three point lead and allowed the team to set up the full-court pressure that would force the decisive turnover.
“It was an amazing year,” Rabas said. “[We have] A tremendous group of coaches and players. When you have a group of people who love doing something and are completely unselfish it is amazing what can be achieved. Life lessons that transcend the court!”
Just prior to the men’s W.C.C. championship game, “The UWFox women's basketball team lost a hard fought battle to UW-Fond Du Lac, 53-47, in the W.C.C. state championship game,” said Tracy Natz, women’s basketball coach. “Both teams found it difficult to find any rhythm offensively as the first half was called [by the referees] very tight and the Cyclones took a 18-16 lead into halftime. In the second half the Falcons found their groove offensively and shot 42% for that half and were able to build to their largest lead of 11 points.
“The Cyclones fought back hard and were able to tie the game on a desperation three pointer from Rachael Pethke with the 30-second shot winding down with a little over a minute left on the game clock. A quick answer by the Falcons forced the Cyclones to foul and they couldn't manage to make any buckets in the final closing seconds of the game. The Cyclones played scrappy intense defense but came up short on the offensive end only shooting 18% from the field overall,” Natz said.
“Leading the way for the Cyclones was Brittany Blob with 13 points,” Natz said. “Rachael Pethke and Devany Boydston both chipped in with nine points. Tori Thern had a team high 13 rebounds and had three steals, while Boydston had nine rebounds, and Breana Decoursin led the team with four steals.”
The lady Cyclones finished the season with a 21-6 overall record. “It was a season full of many firsts and was very successful…and memorable,” Natz summarized.