Despite Losses, Boys Basketball Had Fun and Growth

Photo provided by – Amber Nicholson Boys basketball varsity letter winners Kellen Hartsook, Gavin Tyler, Kaeson Walker, Bradyn McClure, Conner Pace, Josh Aker, Ethan Delibertis, Jason Funk, William Jewell, Jon Holly, Vegas Mauer, Colin Nicholson, Nathan Aker, Kason Forum.

The boys basketball team held a brief awards banquet at the high school on Wednesday, March 6.

Ethan Delibertis took home Defensive Player of the Year, while Colin Nicholson was named Most Valuable Player. Josh Aker was given the Hustle Award, Connor Pace was honored for Sportsmanship and Nathan Aker took home the Free Throw Award.

“The reality of this year is we did not win as many games as I would have liked or expected from our varsity team this year, but that does not change how much fun we had and how much growth we showed on and off the court,” Coach Drew Emmert told The New Era.

He highlighted the few big wins they took home this season, including Lebanon at home and Stayton on the road. The boys team was also awarded Academic All-State for their grade point average (fifth in state).

“I am excited about the direction this program is going,” he said. “We had the freshman class spread out between all three teams and they competed and helped all three teams win games. We also had multiple sophomores take huge steps this year, and we have a few juniors who are coming back and going to be great leaders.”

Varsity third-year letter winners were Nathan Aker, Ethan Delibertis, Jon Holly, Will Jewell, Vegas Mauer and Colin Nicholson. Second-year letters were Josh Aker, Kason Forum and Connor Pace. First year winners included Jason Funk, Kellen Hartsook, Gavin Tyler, Bradyn McClure and Kaeson Walker.

All-league honorable mentions went to Ethan Delibertis, Colin Nicholson and Vegas Mauer.