Grafton forward lands on first team; coaches give kudos to Burbach, Keshemberg
It wasn’t difficult for coaches to decide what boys’ basketball program would receive the lion’s share of the awards in this season’s All-North Shore Conference voting.
Germantown, which dominated league and nonconference foes on the way to its second straight WIAA Division 1 state title, had three players named to the All-NSC first team.
Leading the way for the undefeated Warhawks was senior center Luke Fischer, a 7-foot University of Indiana recruit who led the league in scoring and was chosen conference Player of the Year.
Among local teams, Grafton and Port Washington received recognition in the balloting.
Representing Grafton are forward Scott Tyler, a first-team selection, and guard Caleb Keshemberg, who earned honorable mention. For Port Washington, guard Joey Burbach was named to the second team for the second straight season.
Tyler, a 6-7 senior, led the Black Hawks in scoring (16.1 points per game) and rebounding (11.1). He shot 74% at the free-throw line and 45% from three-point range and the field overall.
Grafton’s most versatile player, Tyler had the ability to handle the ball inside and on the perimeter. He will play Division I college basketball next season at Idaho State University.
“Scotty played all five positions for us during the season. Not a lot of 6-7 guys can do that,” Grafton coach Bob Maronde said.
A solid passer, Tyler averaged 2.1 assists per game.
“That part of his game really improved this season,” Maronde said. “He couldn’t be double-teamed as much because of his passing ability.”
Burbach, a 6-5 senior, was one of the league’s top offensive threats. He led Port in scoring (17.8) and rebounding (7.5) and became only the fifth player in team history to reach the 1,000-point career mark.
Known for his aggressive drives, Burbach was adept at drawing fouls. He shot 74% at the line (120 of 163), including a 15-for-15 performance against Homestead.
“Joe was definitely our offensive leader,” Port coach Brian Hebein said. “He was a guy capable of breaking down defenses and making something happen.”
Burbach set a team record for defensive rebounds in a game with 17 against Sheboygan South.
Keshemberg emerged as one of Grafton’s top all-around players as well as its vocal leader. He averaged 12.9 points and seven rebounds per game, shooting 83% at the foul line and 47% from the field.
“Caleb brought energy and enthusiasm to every practice and game,” Maronde said. “He never stopped playing hard.”
Maronde, who guided the Hawks to a 4-10 conference record in his first year as the boys’ head coach, recalled that Keshemberg made a lasting impression on him during the off-season.
“Caleb was at every open gym and stayed the entire two hours. He worked so hard to improve, and it showed,” Maronde said.
On the way to its fourth consecutive conference title, Germantown extended its winning streak to 56 games. The Warhawks’ other All-NSC first-team members are Lamonte Bearden and Jake Showalter.
In an unusual situation, eight players were named to the first team and six were chosen for the second team.
Maronde said coaches tried two tie-breaking votes to pare the teams, but when both revotes failed to end the deadlock, it was decided to leave the choices intact.
Image Information: Scott Tyler