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Warhawks boys hammer three opponents

Fischer eclipses 1,000 points for career

Feb. 11, 2013

You can look at the Germantown boys basketball team in a strictly numerical sense in both numbers large and small

On the large side, after wins over Wisconsin Lutheran, Port Washington and Hartford last week, the Warhawks are now 21-0 for the season. They have now won 49 games in a row. They also have a 44-game North Shore Conference winning streak going into Thursday's regular season closer at Nicolet and have won 73 of their last 75 games overall.

On the large side, is center Luke Fischer becoming the fourth Warhawks player to go more than1,000-point mark (along with Dick Strack, Ben Averkamp and Zak Showalter) with his 13-point effort against Port Washington on Friday night.

And on the all-important small side, the defending WIAA state champs remain a unanimous number one in state polls and easily claimed the number one seed in the WIAA Division 1 Homestead sectional.

But all those numbers would lose track of the people side of things like the nice senior night ceremonies that Fischer and fellow seniors Kendall Miller and Jordan Kuczynski enjoyed in the 78-35 victory over Port on Friday.

"It was really nice to get that done," Fischer of the 1,000-point club said. "To be mentioned among the best players in Germantown history is quite an honor. It's been in the back of mind for quite some time. I wasn't sure if I was going to make it, having lost all those games last season (to a hand injury), but now it's done."

Unofficially, he now has about 1,020 points, as Zak Showalter (1,688), Averkamp (1,156), and Strack (1,036) are the only ones ahead of him in school history.

"We were able to get a lot of guys a lot of minutes, and get a real good rotation going," coach Steve Showalter said. "Guys who really haven't had as much of a chance before, got to show what they can do and parents got to see their boys in action, which is always a good thing."

That included sophomore forward Kyle Theis, who was just brought up from the junior varsity to fill vacancies left by some academic and injury issues.

"He was a fullback on the football team so he's tough and quick, which suits our needs just fine," Showalter said of Theis.

More fun occurred on Friday night, because as the Warhawks have had precious few home games on the second half of the season (only two of their last 10 will be on their own court), they took advantage of the rare home opportunity to enjoy with their fans their fourth straight North Shore title and their sixth crown in the last seven years.

"So we went and cut down the nets, which is always fun," coach Showalter said. "We finally got to celebrate."

Five players got into double figures this night as Brian Bearden (13 points), Evan Wesenberg (12), Miller and Fischer (11 apiece) and LaMonte Bearden (10) all joined the fun.

Even more zaniness occurred Saturday night in their nonconference game at Hartford. It was a "retro" night in the Orioles' gym and the home team wore old-time uniforms.

Fischer and the rest of the Warhawks saw an opportunity.

"They told us we were welcome to do it, too," Fischer said, "so we talked coach (Showalter) into letting us wear some old uniforms from the mid-1990s."

Bearden led the way with 15 points, while Wesenberg had 14, Fischer 13 and Kuczynski nine in the 80-48 win.

But now the fun is past.

The next number on the agenda for Germantown is 56. That would be the number of wins in a row that the Warhawks would have if they were to go and finish a second straight unbeaten WIAA State championship season. That would require seven more wins, including the Nicolet game.

Fischer has an idea of his team's place in history, which he finds frankly surprising.

"We try not to talk about that too much yet" he said. "We don't want to jinx it, because winning state is the ultimate goal. … The funny thing is, I honestly didn't think we'd be in this position again. I remember an interview I did last year and the person asking me, 'How good do you think you can be next year?'

"I just never expected us to be this good, but now that we're this far, I want it to be exactly like last year (with another state championship at the end)."

They may get there yet. In the Feb. 5, 84-51, road hammering of fifth-ranked in D2 polls Wisconsin Lutheran, the Warhawks caught the attention of Lutheran coach Ryan Walz in a big way.

"I thought we put such a great effort in early defensively that we tired ourselves out," Walz said. "You have to work so hard to stop them, I think we just ran out of gas. We have not played a team with that kind of length."

Walz said the Vikings' season-high 22 turnovers were the kiss of the death.

"If you are going to turn the ball over and let them get in transition, they're just going to absolutely shred you," he said. "If you turn it over 22 times against them, you will not be within 30 points."

Coach Showalter tried to dampen the avid enthusiasm despite the 27 points by LaMonte Bearden, the 19 by Fischer and the eight apiece by Jon Averkamp, Wesenberg, Dearionte Hudson and Jake Showalter.

"I told them that for us, the playoffs start Thursday night (against Nicolet)," he said. "The second season is beginning for us. Nicolet is a tough test and they're only going to get tougher after that. We're going to look at all these games as 'must-win' playoff-type games.

"We need to have that attitude to keep improving and to keep things going."

Correspondent Mike Daly also contributed to this story.

On a roll

WIAA BRACKETOLOGY: Germantown gets the top seed in its half of the bracket and hosts the winner of Waukesha South and Hartford in a regional semifinal on Feb. 22. If they win that, they host the winner of Waukesha West and Homestead in a regional final on Feb. 23. Sectional semifinals are Feb. 28 at Waukesha West and the sectional final is at Homestead on March 2.

Sussex Hamilton is the second seed in Germantown's half of the bracket, while in the northern half of the sectional, De Pere is the first seed and Sheboygan North the second.

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