Shorewood girls basketball
The optimism is readily apparent for the Greyhounds after their encouraging 12-11 season as they graduate only one senior and also bring up players off a competitive 8-12 junior varsity squad.
"I think we made great strides," coach Jeff Eimers said. "The 12 wins is the best since 2005-06. Our only senior Johnna Odom was hurt in December, and though she came back, she never quite got back to the form she had beforehand.
"If there was any good that came out of it, and you always hate to see something like that happen, was that it helped more people gain experience. You look back on the year and the only team that blew us out was (state D2 runner-up) New Berlin Eisenhower. Pius, Pewaukee, we were competitive in those games. We just lost a lot of close games."
The Greyhounds lost another one of those close games, a triple overtime defeat to Bradley Tech to end their season in WIAA regional play. Other close losses came at the hands of Whitnall, South Milwaukee and Cudahy.
Eimers' optimism comes from the fact that in the Woodland East, South Milwaukee and Whitnall were senior-dominated, and so the division is wide open next year.
"But our girls have to realize that they're not just freshmen and sophomores anymore," Eimers said. "We need to be able to handle certain situations better … but we will be a solid team. It used to be for us that we could look at seven or eight games and say we can be in those games.
"Now next year, I think we'll be able to beat anybody (in the conference)."
Robbie Holland earned first-team All-Woodland Eastern Division with an 11 points per game (including 21 3-pointers) effort while Grace Hayes was second-team after averaging 9.8 points and 4.4 rebounds a contest.
Jada Stackhouse averaged 8.1 points a game and Ashley Eimers averaged a team-high 6.4 rebounds a game.
Brown Deer girls basketball
First-year coach Vinnie Murray was pleased at the progress the Falcons made in their 8-16 season.
"First of all, I think we got some continuity back into the program," he said, "and we got the JV going again with a good staff. We were also able to do some skill work with the varsity that hadn't been there before."
The Falcons were able to achieve this despite a small team that had only two seniors (second-team All-Woodland East selection Jasalyn Lee and Allison Laurent) and a small team that physically had people out of position all year.
"Everybody was playing different positions," Murray said. "We hit our stride in the middle of the season. I think in the end we were only really out of about four games all year."
What hurt Brown Deer was that point guard Sabrina Wimer missed a good chunk of the end of the season with a foot problem.
"That really hurt," Murray said. "She was really our engine that made us go."
Lee led the team with an 11.2 points and 10.5 rebounds a game mark, while Laurent averaged 6.3 points and 7.8 rebounds a contest, while shooting 64 percent from the field. Wimer averaged 7.9 ppg. And shot 58 percent from the field while Valerie Whiyee tossed in 7 points a game and Imani Stingley 6.2.
Murray was very encouraged by the progress of the junior varsity.
"At the beginning of the year some of what they were doing couldn't even be called basketball," he said, "but by the end of the year, they were doing great. In my 15 years of coaching, they advanced more than any team I've seen since the beginning of a season to the end. They lost to Shorewood by about 60 in their first game but in the second game, they had that down to six-to-eight.
"… That's what we learned overall this year. You have to take some small steps in order to take some bigger ones."
Homestead boys track
The defending North Shore Conference champions got the season off on the right foot when behind the winning efforts of the 800-meter relay team, they took seventh of 26 teams in the Lake Michigan Invitational last weekend.
The relay turned in a fine early-season time of one minute, 33.53 seconds in claiming its victory as they scored 32 points. Lakes (Ill.) won with 76 points.
Other places by event included the following: 55 dash: Jay Schneider, third (6.69); 200: Schneider, third (22.99); long jump: Riley Pelisek, eighth (20 feet-2 inches); and triple jump: Pelisek, second (44-3) Blake Leeson, eighth (41-1).
Leeson was also 10th in the high jump (6-0) and 14th in the 55 hurdles (8.74) while Brett Geschke was ninth in the 200 (23.58).
Shorewood boys track
The Greyhounds picked up where they left off in the state meet last spring, as they won the 1,600-meter relay to lead the way to a competitive third-place finish in the Wisconsin Lutheran Invitational on Saturday.
The group included state relay members Alec Grimmer, Jacob Goldberg and Taylor Dennis. The trio were joined by Anthony Brewer as they cruised to a two-plus second win in 3:33.2. Defending state 200- and 400-champ and state relay anchor Justin Rabon did not run in this meet.
Shorewood set a state Division 2 record in the 1,600 relay at state last June.
Dennis also won the 55-meter intermediate hurdles in 8.27 seconds as the Greyhounds scored 56 points for their spot in the 17-school field. Grayslake Central (Ill.) won with 107 while Lutheran was second with 102 1/2 .
Other places of note included the following: 3,200 relay: John Traudt, Alex MacKowski, Jack Mauer and Max Gietzen, fourth (8:59.93); 1,600: Charles Stahl, fifth (4:37.89).; 400: Rashad Packer, sixth (56.71); 800: Goldberg, second (2:03.74); 200: Grimmer, third (23.69); Brewer, seventh (24.25); long jump: Dennis, fourth (20 1/2 ); 3,200: Johnnie Papineau, seventh (10:44.92).
The team will be augmented by members of the state championship cross country team from last fall.
Brown Deer boys track
Jake Schimenz, 2011 state D2 800-meter champ, showed he's ready to roll this season, as he won his specialty in Division 2 of the Nelson/Daniel Invitational at UW-Whitewater last weekend.
Schimenz, who set a school record at state last season while taking second in the race, turned in a time of 2:02.95 to win by more than two seconds.
The Falcons also got a seventh out of their 1,600 relay team (3:49.59).
Nicolet boys track
Devante Coleman, a member of last season's state championship 400 relay team, was seventh in the 200 meters (23.49) to lead the Knights at the Lake Michigan Invitational last weekend.
Alex Baez was 12th in the high jump (5-10), while the 3,200 relay team was the same in 9:04.59.
Brown Deer girls track
Kyla Blackman was third in the 55 dash in 7.53 seconds to lead the Falcons to a 21st place showing in the Nelson/Daniel Invitational at UW-Whitewater last weekend.
Blackman was also a competitive 11th in the long jump (14-0).
Shorewood girls track
The Greyhounds scored 10 points and finished 15 out of 17 in the Wisconsin Lutheran Invitational on Saturday.
Places for the Greyhounds included the following: 55 dash: Alexis Farrington, eighth (7.76); 1,600: Haley Florsheim, sixth (5:31.74); 200: Farrington, third (27.1).
Homestead girls track
State qualifier Nia Feaster was third in the triple jump with a leap of 36 feet even while fellow state participant Monica Caputa was fifth (34-0) to lead the Highlanders to a 15th-place effort in the 26-school Lake Michigan Invitational last weekend.
The pair's efforts led Homestead to a 13 1/2 point total as Lake Central (Ill.) won with 82.
Other good efforts for the Highlanders included the following: 55 hurdles: Elyssa Tracy, seventh (9.84); and the 800 relay: seventh (1:57.35).
Nicolet girls track
State qualifier Devon Peck was fourth in the shot put with a toss of 35-6 to lead the Knights to a tie for 18th place in the Lake Michigan Invitational last weekend.
The Knights scored six points for their spot. The only other place for the Knights was an eighth from Jnana Martin in the 200 (27.7) while powerful distance runner Lauren Cunningham started out cautiously with a ninth in the 800 (2:32.82).
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