Following a second place finish in the Fox River Classic Conference, just one game out of first place behind De Pere, the Boys basketball team has high expectations for the upcoming season. Coach Nate Rykal is hoping his team can compete for the top spot in the FRCC. “As always, our goal each year is to win conference, and we believe we can make that happen this year with the team that we have.”
Last year, Senior point guard Craig Minzlaff led the team in scoring with 11.8 PPG, as well as earning a First Team All-Conference selection. “Craig was a great player for us last year, but we have a few guys who can handle the ball, Logan White being one of them.” White, a senior this year, only played in 8 games last year, but has high expectations for this year. With De Pere losing the reigning conference player of the year, Brevin Pritzl, Coach Rykal thinks the conference will be more even than before. “With De Pere losing Brevin, the conference race may be a little more open than last year, especially with two less teams in the conference.”
The change to the conference this year is that Green Bay East and Green Bay West have both left the FRCC to join the Bay Conference. The Pirates have never lost to East or West, so Coach Rykal thinks it might lead to a more balanced schedule. “With East and West out of the conference, it makes each of the ten [FRCC] teams play each other twice, so there are no advantages of playing a team once or twice.”
The biggest rule change the WIAA made this season is making the games two 18-minute halves instead of four eight-minute quarters. “It definitely impacts the pace of play of the game,” said Rykal. “We usually press when we play defense in practice, so it gives our guys a chance to handle the pressure. We have great depth and sub freely, so it will be interesting to see how it all plays out.”
The Pirates open the season on the road against Appleton West on November 28.
When the Girls basketball team took to the gym at Bay Port High School for the first day of practice, there was some eagerness around the program to get the season underway. “We were really excited. Basketball helps winter go by fast.” said coach Kati Coleman. “I love to be in the gym with these girls.”
The Pirates return five different players who played in every game last season, including four of their top five scorers. They are led by Maddie Re who averaged 10.7 points per game and 8.7 rebounds a year ago, earning her 2nd Team All-Conference.
After finishing sixth in the Fox River Classic Conference last year with a 9-7 record, the Pirates fell in the Regional Final at De Pere 71-55. The Pirates finished 13-10 overall in Coleman’s first year. “My team goal is to always do better than we did last year,” she said. “I would love to see these girls get to sectionals.”
Along with a better postseason finish, Bay Port also has lofty goals for the new-look conference. “I really think that we have the team to finish in the top 3 in the conference. I think Pulaski and Notre Dame are going to be tough”, added Coleman. Pulaski returns 1st all-conference performer in Mariah Szymanski, the lone 1st teamer back in the FRCC. Also, both Green Bay East and West are gone from the now ten-team league.
With a new year come a few rule changes. The WIAA has changed the game format from four individual eight-minute quarters to two 18 minute halves. There will now be no break in the middle of the first and second halves and four extra minutes of total game time. Coleman said that she is not quite sure how it will affect the game. “I don’t know yet. We lose a time out almost with no break at the end of each quarter. It will be an adjustment for everyone.”
Bay Port begins the 2015-16 season with a home game November 21st against Menasha.
Fall sports coverage has come to an end with Bay Port Radio at NEWsportsradio.com. We have begun our second year of online broadcast coverage of Bay Port Pirate Athletics. Like last year we covered Pirate Football, but we added Volleyball to the broadcast coverage.
The Pirate Volleyball team finished the season at 16-18 overall, in fourth place in the Fox River Classic Conference at 5-4. Dakota Kropp finished the season leading Bay Port in kills and blocks, earning her First Team All-Conference honors in her senior campaign. An improved Pirate attack and an aggressive scheme helped the team reach the Regional Finals before falling to Appleton East in four sets.
The Pirates were able to knock off a couple of big FRCC opponents along the way this season; teams that had given Bay Port troubles for a number of years. They defeated De Pere in a five-set thriller during the season, marking the first time that Bay Port defeated the Redbirds in more than 12 years. Green Bay Preble also lost a conference match to the Pirates for the first time since 2007. Bay Port also swept the Hornets in three sets in the Regional Semifinal, which advanced them to the second round of postseason.
Just three seniors will graduate from the young Pirate squad that looks to improve under Brendan Baier, who finished his third season as Head Coach.
For the 15th straight season, the Bay Port Football team advanced to postseason play. After graduating 16 starters from a year ago, Bay Port rebounded nicely with a top two defense in the FRCC. Inside Linebacker Evan Bindas was one of 14 Pirates to earn All-Conference recognition, with the Senior being named the Defensive Player of the Year in the ten-team league. The Pirates finished 7-3 overall and second in the FRCC at 7-2, dropping a Level 1 playoff game to Eau Claire Memorial. On a soaking wet evening, the Pirates struggled to move the ball and were defeated 29-0 by the Old Abes.
On the offensive side of the ball, Bay Port ran heavily all season behind Tackle Cole Van Lanen. The future Wisconsin Badger was named Offensive Lineman of the Year in the conference for the second consecutive year. He helped pave the way for a rushing attack that gained 2200 yards on the season, led by Running Back Austin Sylvester, who ran for 857 yards and ten touchdowns. Both Quarterback Quinn Pierner and Halfback Paxton Pelegrin contributed seven touchdowns each on the ground to pace a Pirate team that averaged 29.3 points per game in Head Coach Gary Westerman’s fourth season as Head Coach.
Defensively, Bay Port was led by 8 All-Conference performers in the starting 11. Each of the four defensive backs were named, as well as three different linebackers. Drew Schleis led the way with three of the five interceptions for the team, while Bay Port sacked the opponent 30 times throughout the year.
That was the coverage for Bay Port Radio broadcasts on NEWsportsradio.com for the Fall season. Seven volleyball matches were carried, along with each of the ten Football games. We move to Winter sports, beginning with Girls Basketball opening the season on November 21. There will also be broadcast coverage of Boys Hockey and Basketball, totally more than 40 live games through early March. Follow the Bay Port Radio feed on Twitter @VoiceofBP, like Voice of BP on Facebook & follow along the action of Bay Port Athletics online at NEWsporstradio.com.
Thank you for the Fall Season following,
N.E.W. Sports Radio