The area has produced some pretty talented high school basketball players in recent years, and many of those players have taken their talents to the college level, where they are continuing to stuff stat sheets for their teams.
Most college teams are at about the midway point of their season, making it a good time to take a look at just how good the area alumni are doing on the hardwood.
Former Portage High School athlete Caitlyn Hibner, a sophomore guard at UW-Green Bay, has started all 12 games for the Phoenix this season and is averaging 6.4 points per game. Hibner is also averaging 3.5 rebounds in just under 25 minutes per contest. She scored her season-high 19 points in a game against the University of Wisconsin on Nov. 15 in Madison. In that game, Hibner made five of six of her 3-point attempts, leading Green Bay to a 67-34 win over the Badgers at the Kohl Center. Hibner also scored 14 points in a 63-57 win at Northwestern on Dec. 19. Green Bay, currently ranked 24th in the USA Today Coaches Poll and 25th by the Associated Press, is 12-2 overall and 2-1 in the Horizon League.
Wisconsin Lutheran sophomore guard Tierney Woodward, a former Poynette High School athlete, is averaging 1.5 points and 6.2 minutes per game for the NCAA Division III Warriors this season. She scored a season-high five points in a 70-48 win over Rockford on Nov. 25. Wisconsin Lutheran took an 11-game winning streak into Wednesday’s game at Marian. The Warriors are currently 11-1 overall and are the only unbeaten team in the Northern Athletics College Conference at 8-0. Wisconsin Lutheran is currently among the teams receiving votes in the latest D3hoops.com Women’s Top 25 Poll.
University of North Dakota freshman center Melissa Leet, a 2017 Portage High School graduate, has played in seven games for the Division I Fighting Hawks. She has yet to score and is averaging 5.4 minutes per contest. Leet is averaging 0.9 rebounds per game, including a season-high three boards in a 105-43 loss at Baylor on Dec. 5. Leet made her debut with the Fighting Hawks when she played 4 minutes in a 65-55 loss to Oregon State on Nov. 10. North Dakota enters Thursday night’s game at Idaho State at 8-7 overall and 1-3 in the Big Sky Conference.
Former Poynette High School athlete Tanner Bruchs, a junior guard at UW-La Crosse, has started all 13 games this season for the Eagles. Entering Wednesday night’s game at UW-Stevens Point, Bruchs was La Crosse’s second-leading scorer at 9.5 points per game. He is also averaging 4 rebounds in 22.2 minutes per contest. His 38 percent shooting (24-of-63) on 3-pointers is also second on the team. Bruchs scored a season-best 17 points in a 73-52 win over Fairleigh Dickinson University-Florham (N.J.) in the semifinals of the Music City Classic in Gallatin, Tennessee, on Dec. 29. La Crosse was 9-4 overall and 1-1 in the Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference entering Wednesday’s game at UW-Stevens Point.
Former Lodi High School athlete Jordan Shea, a junior guard at Division II Assumption College in Worcester, Massachusetts, has started 13 of 14 games for the Greyhounds this season, and is averaging 7.6 points, 3 rebounds and 1.6 assists in 28.1 minutes. Shea, who transferred to the school from Division I Massachusetts-Lowell, scored a season-best 15 points in a 65-63 win over Nyack on Dec. 16. The Greyhounds were 4-10 overall and 1-8 in conference play entering a Wednesday night game against the New York Institute of Technology.
Stetson University senior guard Brady Moses, a former Lodi High School athlete, has played in three games so far this season for the Division I Hatters. He is averaging three points per game after scoring nine points when he made three of his four 3-pointers in an 87-53 win over Ave Maria on Nov. 20. Moses, who previously played two seasons at Division III Maranatha Baptist University in Watertown, joined the team at Stetson as a walk-on prior to the start of the 2016-17 season. Stetson University, located in central Florida, enters tonight’s game against the New Jersey Institute of Technology with an 8-9 overall record and is 0-1 in the Atlantic Sun Conference.
Former Lodi High School athlete John Hatch is having a big senior season at Colorado College, where he is averaging a team-high 16.6 points per game for the Division III Tigers. Hatch, who has started 12 of 14 games, is also averaging 5.1 rebounds in 32.2 minutes. He currently ranks second on the team in field goal percentage (.510) and is first on the team in 3-point field goal percentage (.507). A first-team all-Southern College Athletic Conference selection last year as a junior, Hatch scored a season-high 29 points in an 89-80 loss to the University of Texas-Tyler on Dec. 17. In an 84-81 loss to Hardin-Simmons University on Dec. 30, Hatch became the 21st player in program history to score 1,000 career points. The Tigers are 6-7 overall and 1-2 in conference action this season.
University of Minnesota-Crookston junior Gable Smith, a former Lodi High School athlete, is averaging 25.5 minutes in 16 starts this season for the Division II Golden Eagles. The 6-foot-7 forward is averaging 8.2 points, 6.8 rebounds and 4 blocks per game this season. He scored a season-high 16 points and had 10 rebounds in an 83-57 win over Bemidji State on Nov. 25. He almost had another double-double in a 76-64 loss to Northern State on Dec. 9 when he scored 13 points and finished with nine blocks. The Golden Eagles are 8-8 overall and 5-5 in the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference.
Former Lodi High School athlete Peyton Fulkerson, a sophomore forward at UW-Stout, has played in two games this season for the Blue Devils and is averaging 1 point, 1.5 rebounds and 1 steal in limited action this season. Fulkerson played 6 minutes and had one rebound in an 85-56 exhibition loss to the University of Wisconsin on Nov. 5. UW-Stout is 6-7 overall and 0-2 in the WIAC.
Rockford University junior forward Taylor Krocker, a former Portage High School athlete, has started 14 of 16 games in his first season with the Division III Regents after transferring from UW-Baraboo/Sauk County. Krocker is averaging 10.2 points, 5 rebounds and 21.9 minutes per game this season. He had a season-best 23 points in an 86-66 loss to Carthage on Nov. 17. Krocker has reached double figures six times this season, including 17-point, 12-rebound performance in a 72-70 win over Edgewood College on Nov. 28. Rockford is 5-9 overall and 3-6 in the Northern Athletic Collegiate Conference.
Former Pardeeville High School athlete Nate Goebel, a freshman guard at UW-Baraboo/Sauk County, has played in 10 games, including two starts, for the Fighting Spirits this season. He is averaging 0.4 points, 0.6 rebounds and 4 minutes per game. He scored a season-best three points in a 86-71 win over UW-Richland on Dec. 13. UW-Baraboo/Sauk County entered Wednesday’s game at UW-Manitowoc with a 4-7 overall record.