Last year, the Waunakee boys’ basketball team surprised a few by making a postseason run to sectionals.
This year, the Warriors hope to build on last season’s postseason run; Waunakee returns three of their top six scorers from their 2018-19 team in juniors Caden Nelson, Casey Fischer and sophomore Andrew Keller. Those three – along with senior guard Jacob May – provide an experienced core group of players to build from.
The Warriors certainly have spots to fill following the graduation of four all-Badger North players from last year’s team; players looking to earn increased minutes include seniors Gaje Hughes, Oleg Novinski and Caden Hough.
Providing reinforcements in the backcourt from the JV ranks are junior Jaxson Zibell and sophomore Aidan Driscoll. In the frontcourt, depth will come from junior Randy Vojtisek and sophomore Jack Dotzler.
One of Waunakee’s major strengths will continue to be their length; the pairing of the 6’5” Keller and 6’6” Dotzler in the frontcourt would likely create mismatches against any opponent in the Badger North.
Combined with the slashing abilities of May and Nelson and the long-range specialists in Fischer and Zibell, the Warriors offense appears to be as versatile as ever. Such versatility will go a long way towards improving on last year’s fourth-place finish in the Badger North.
Waunakee will face tough competition if they hope to reclaim the Badger North crown in Head Coach Dana MacKenzie’s 17th season at the helm; an 11th conference title in MacKenzie’s tenure will require contributions across the board.
The Warriors will open their season on the road, playing at Monroe on Thursday, Dec. 5. Their road trip will continue at Sauk Prairie on Dec. 7 and at the Fiserv Forum – the home of the Milwaukee Bucks – against Oconomowoc on December 11 before finally playing in front of a home crowd for the first time on Dec. 13 against Beaver Dam.