With just one senior on Maquoketa Valley’s boys’ basketball team for the 2019-20 season, the squad looks to be in a good place for next year.
MV ended its season with an overall record of 9-13, with Mason Lubben the only senior on the team.
“Mason is such a great kid. Early on in his basketball career, he devoted a lot of time to basketball individually. He didn’t have much around him in his grade as far as players go, but he put a ton of time in going to camps and doing skill development,” coach Eric Conner commented. “I know Mason would have liked to have seen more time on the floor this year, but he understood his role and was huge for us at times in the locker room. I am confident that Mason left a mark on the program with his leadership and I know he is destined to do great things going forward.”
“Looking at a lot of our goals that we had at the start of the season, we had hoped to have more than nine wins,” commented Conner. “If you look at wins alone, I think we would all agree that we under-achieved in that sense. But the coolest thing about this season was being able to see all of the individual growth from the players, both as young men and as basketball players. We came a long way this year in that sense.”
The Wildcats defeated Prince of Peace, Bellevue Marquette, East Buchanan (twice), Central City, Clayton Ridge, Starmont (twice) and Ed-Co. The team constantly worked hard and never gave up. The team won four close last-second games during this season.
“With an off-season of weight room commitment, lots of playing basketball and more individual skill improvement, we are really excited about what we will be returning next season,” Conner commented. “We are in the process of going through individual meetings to talk about improvement from the players and telling them what they need to improve upon for next season and beyond. We are excited as well about what we see from coaches and in players in the lower levels of our program. There is great parent involvement as well, so the future is very bright for basketball at MV.”
Statistical leaders for MV were: points per game — Andrew Holtz 12.5, Avery Holtz 8.9, AJ Ambundo 8.6, Owen Mensen 5.7, Isaac Zirtzman 2.9, Mitch Heims 2.4, Miguel Bojorquez 2, Andrew Hildebrand 1.8, Ethan Doyl 1.6, Landen Deutmeyer 1, Mason Lubben 0.8, Devante Strickland 0.6; rebounds — Ambundo 120, Andrew Holtz 64, Bojorquez 56, Avery Holtz 45, Mensen 43, Zirtzman 35, Heims 22, Lubben 13, Doyl and Hildebrand 12, Tony Offerman seven, Strickland five, Deutmeyer one; assists — Avery Holtz 69, Andrew Holtz 49, Ambundo 16, Bojorquez and Mensen 14, Heims 12, Zirtzman seven, Lubben five, Doyl, Strickland, and Deutmeyer one; steals — Avery Holtz 23, Andrew Holtz 21, Ambundo 14, Mensen 12, Bojorquez 10, Lubben seven, Heims four, Zirtzman and Deutmeyer two, Doyl and Strickland one; blocks — Avery Holtz eight, Strickland five, Andrew Holtz and Zirtzman two, Ambundo, Mensen, and Lubben one.