Pictured above from right to left: White Niver’s Nick Sayler putting the clamps on B/E’s Tyler Schultz…Center, Adam Kusler from Sioux Falls Roosevelt is all about the D, and finally, at right, Tea Area’s Justin Hohn might have the quickest hands in South Dakota.
By Rich Winter
Well, as we head to the home stretch of the regular season the action is only going to RATCHET up with every big game played. In February teams are looking for that defensive identity, the one that keeps them in every game, even when the shots aren’t falling…Before we talk February though, let’s look back at some of the great defensive players with our Sacred Hoops January Players of the month.
White River junior Nick Sayler
If u are on the court playing the White River boys and see Nick Sayler coming out to guard you…Consider that the ultimate compliment.
When WR plays Pine Ridge, Sayler gets Halin Bad Bear.
When WR played B/E, Sayler guarded 1st-team all-stater, Sawyer Schultz…
Take a look at the photos of Sayler…this kid has put a lot of time in the gym…GREAT ATHLETE…RB in football, medaled at state track last year.
Doesn’t get the publicity with a leading scorer kind of guy, and he’s more than capable of that, BUT, this kid plays hard-nose D every time he takes the court.
Adam Kusler - Sioux Falls Roosevelt
Adam Kusler No. 9 (pictured with brother Aaron) is probably better known for his exploits on the football field.
But, when you are a heavily recruited D1 Linebacker/Type, yeah that translates to the basketball court.
On Jan. 7, Mitch Begeman’s crew was 3-4 and riding a four game losing streak…
And then the Roosevelt started balling…Six wins in a row before falling 42-41 to O’Gorman…
“Super hard working kid. You tell him his, job and he just goes out and gets it done. Physical, strong, aggressive. All great attributes to be a sold defender,” Allan Bertram Sacred Hoops Director
Justin Hohn - Tea Area
Justin Hohn won’t light you up for 30 very often, BUT, this UC Irvine signee is as tough and scrappy point guard as u will see in South Dakota.
“Has major feel for the game. Has crazy hands on defensive end of the ball. In the few games I’ve watched he understands the make up of his team. At times he looks to score, and then, other times he knows he has shooters and scorers everywhere and gets them involved - Jordan Long Sacred Hoops Director