Posted On: 05/17/18 3:08 PM

Kade Stearns is a shooter no matter when uniform he is wearing: Tea Area or SD Venom. PHD caught up with Kade after the battle at the Lakes.

“Our high school season was disappointing, but still a success,” Stearns said. “The ultimate goal is always to contend for a state championship every year. Overall we had a productive year; we just came up a little short.”

Stearns took a bigger offensive role this winter and became a better defensive player.

“As a player, I improved my consistency both on the offensive and defensive end. On the offensive side, I was able to step into a larger role after Ethan Freidel graduated, and that was being a lethal shooter that he was. Then on the defensive side, guarding well and taking pride in my matchup. Being a competitor night in and night out.”

The Venom season is only two events old but the first two of seven have went quite well. The team has won six of eight games heading into their next event in Omaha – the Midwest Championships – next weekend.

“This is our first year of Venom Basketball and it will be a memorable one,” Kade explained. “Our team is very hard working. I love the energy and effort the guys bring every day to practice. It not only makes me better, but our team as well.”

In eight games Kade has taken 47 threes and made 21 for a solid percentage of 45. He’s scoring a dozen points a game this far for an exciting new squad.

“So far we have competed in two tournaments: in Ames, Iowa and this past weekend in Minneapolis at the Prep Hoops Battle at The Lakes,” Stearns explained. “These are big tournaments and we have made it far in both.”

Solomon Bach, Dawson Paulsen, and Mason Ritter are just some of the talented players wearing the red and black and so far it’s been an exciting 17u season.

“Our team needs to continue working on closing out games and even though AAU Basketball is about exposure and being noticed, I love that our team doesn’t view it that way,” Kade said.

“We always compete as a team. I can’t wait to see what our team will shape up to be at the end of the year.

“Our goal is to get ourselves better and to work our way to the next level. A way we can accomplish that is by competing together and winning at some tournaments. Our main goal is competing, getting better and having fun as a group.”

Another thing AAU is about is getting ready for the next season of high school basketball. The guys at Tea Area, they want a second title and that’s why they are working so hard this off-season.

“Before my senior year begins, I want to improve my finishing ability, especially against contact,” Stearns explained. “Another aspect of my game that I want to improve, is scoring on the bounce and creating a shot for myself.

“And I will also continue to improve on my catch and shoot ability.”

Stearns is the type of shooter that schools want in their program and so far a nice group of teams has been in contact.

“The schools that have shown interests are Dakota State, Dakota Wesleyan, Dordt, Mount Marty, Northwestern, and University of Sioux Falls,” Kade said.