The top teams in 5A didn’t achieve success as one-man teams. Here is a look at some of the ‘unsung heroes’ who are helping lead their teams without a ton of recognition: #1 Maize South – Tory Homan Tory Homan…
The top teams in 5A didn’t achieve success as one-man teams. Here is a look at some of the ‘unsung heroes’ who are helping lead their teams without a ton of recognition:
#1 Maize South –, 6-foot-7 center, 2024:
Maize South started the season with a big win over Andover Central and finished it with an impressive victory against Derby to get to 5-0. We knew the Mavericks could be putting together something special with their nice group of guards and wing players. They needed a big man to defend the paint, provide a scoring option and lock down the glass. Homan has been that this year, grabbing 11 rebounds and swatting 4 shots to go with his 16 points per game.
#3 Kapaun –, 6-foot-6 forward, 2023:
Anciaux threw the balance of power even more in favor of the Crusaders when he decided to play basketball his senior season rather than focus on football. He is a powerful forward with the athleticism to impact a game in every phase. He handles it well enough to run the break, can face the basket, and can terrorize opponents in the paint. Anciaux nursed an injury to start the season, but he hit for 14 against Manhattan as the team went to the break 5-0.
#4 Hutchinson – Nic Lange, 6-foot-4 forward, 2023:
The Salthawks assembled a bunch of nice pieces to build on their 12-10 season a year ago. Lange was one of the holdovers who is making a big impact in support of the team’s collection of guards and wings. Lange makes his biggest impact floating on the paint and drilling three-pointers. He also has the length and moves his feet to protect the rim.
#5 St James – Gabe Sydzik, 6-foot-7 forward, 2023:
The Thunder had to replace the production of graduate Sam Somerhalder at the forward spot. Sydzik was really good in his role the last couple of years. Now he’s the top support to senior guard. Sydzik is hitting from deep and scoring consistently. Thus far in his senior year, he’s averaging 14 points and 9 rebounds.
#7 Topeka West – Malachi Berg, 6-foot-3 forward, 2023:
This list consists of a bunch of athletic, physical and tough big men. Berg doesn’t have to take a back seat to any of them. Known more as a football player, he’s quietly put together a great career as a defender, rebounder and tough presence for the Chargers, primarily because he teamed with Elijah Brooks, who grabbed all the headlines. But don’t overlook Berg’s skill. He’s averaging 16 points and 7 rebounds as a senior. After losing the first game to Basehor-Linwood, the Chargers ran off five wins in a row to fly up the rankings.