Posted On: 03/2/18 11:21 AM
With the regular season coming to an end tonight for most teams in Minnesota, it has given us a full season’s worth of high school games to evaluate the performances of many players throughout Minnesota in a number of conferences and regions of the state.
The Central Lakes Conference is the premier “big-school” conference in northern and central Minnesota, and in this week’s edition of Notes from the North we’ll look at some of the most promising sophomores from around the conference.
Deng Diew, St. Cloud Apollo – Diew is every bit of the 6’5” that he is listed at in the Apollo program. He has been an effective back line of defense for the Eagles this season and provides a physical presence on the block and in the paint. His offensive production has been up and down this year, but he is averaging 8.4 PPG and has reached double-figures ten times this season.
Michael Gravelle, St. Cloud Apollo – Gravelle is the 5’8” floor-general for the fast-paced Apollo offense this season. He has displayed both straight-line and lateral quickness in navigating pressure and maneuvering in the half court, as well as improvement as an on-ball defender. He is averaging 9.7 PPG this season and has scored in double-figures 15 times.
Ben Staehling, Brainerd – The 6’2” wing has played valuable minutes for the Warriors this season and has impacted the game in a variety of ways. His athleticism is evident in his ability to defend and rebound. He has not been called on much to score this season, but he had a two-game stretch in January when he scored 13 against Alexandria and 11 at Moorhead.
Owen Davis, Brainerd – Davis is a long and rangy 6’5” player that can operate on the perimeter and in the paint. His role has expanded as the season has progressed. He has a high-motor and rebounds the ball well. He has been getting more comfortable on the offensive end lately, averaging around 6 PPG over the last 7 games.
Nate Trewick, St. Cloud Tech – The 5’10” point guard has been a steady ball-handler for the Tigers this season, but his largest contributions this season have unquestionably come from his marksmanship beyond the arc. In the four games this year that he has put up his largest scoring outputs, he notched 57 points, all on triples, going a combined 19 for 32 (59%).
Odier Olange, St. Cloud Tech – Although the stats don’t jump out at you, 3 PPG and 2.7 REB, the length and athleticism of the 6’6” forward are apparent in game. With a bevy of offensive options for Tech he hasn’t done much scoring this season but he has registered double-figures twice this season. Perhaps his best overall game this season was an 8-point 11 rebound performance against ROCORI.
Matt Sieben, Sartell-St. Stephen – It has been a tough season for the Sabres, but one bright spot has been their 5’10” point guard. Sieben plays with a confidence and maturity that isn’t common for a sophomore and is a very steady hand at the helm for his team. He can get in the lane and knock down an open jumper with ease. He will be a key building block and focal point of the team for coach Marcus Oistad going forward.
Josh Schloe, Sauk Rapids-Rice – The 6’5” forward has been a key rotational player for the 18-7 Storm. With scoring options like Cody Landwehr, Anthony Massman, and Deng Deang, Schloe has not seen many opportunities to score, but did notch 12 in a game against Detroit Lakes in February. He is solid on the defensive end and is good for a few rebounds a game in his current role.
It will be interesting to see how these guys progress through the playoffs and the grassroots season into next year’s high school season. Will these guys become the next stars in the CLC, or will other players from JV teams not listed above make a leap into the conference’s elite players? It’ll be a lot of fun to watch either way!