Jared Casey 6-0 jr. Plainville
After a solid sophomore season last year, Casey further established himself as one of the premier players in the area with a monster junior campaign.
Casey was the Cardinals’ go-to threat all year, averaging 21 points, 8.5 rebounds, 4.4 assists and 3.3 steals a game. He helped lead Plainville back to the 2A state tournament.
Casey’s season got off to a rousing start, with the 6-foot guard pouring in 40 points in a season-opening 64-62 win over Smith Center. He scored more than 30 points four times on the season.
He was clutch in the Cardinals’ 76-73 sub-state semifinal win over Hoxie, delivering 30 points.
Tradgon McCrae 6-0 sr. Hays High
The multi-sport standout continued to show off his versatility for the Indians in his final year on the hardwood. McCrae averaged 15.4 points and 4.5 assists on the season.
He was the Indians’ top 3-point shooter, knocking in 42 treys. The 6-foot guard put up 35 points against Salina South.
McCrae was a first-team All-Western Athletic Conference selection. He is also an all-state caliber soccer player and golfer. He took fourth in the Class 4A golf tournament last year and is primed for a big senior season on the course.
In addition, last spring McCrae pulled double duty, golfing and playing on the varsity baseball team.
Player of the Year — John Pfannenstiel 6-1 sr. Ness City
The 6-foot-1 senior guard put together a storybook ending to his standout career, leading Ness City to its first state championship in program history.
Pfannenstiel, a repeat selection on The HDN All-Area team averaged 21.7 points, 4.7 assists and 5.6 rebounds on the year.
In the 2A quarterfinals against Lawrence Seabury, he scored 24 points and banked in a runner at the buzzer in overtime to send the Eagles to a 63-61 victory. He went for 20 points in a 71-66 victory over Inman in the semifinals.
Hutchinson-Trinity concentrated its defensive efforts on keeping Pfannnenstiel contained in the championship game, but Pfannenstiel deferred to his supporting cast and the Eagles topped Trinity 67-55 in the final.
Riley Sides 6-1 sr. Northern Valley
Sides led the Huskies to a 22-3 record as he capped off an outstanding career. The 6-1 guard averaged 17.4 points, 5.5 rebounds and 4.3 assists.
Sides scored in the 30s three times on the season. His season high was 37 early in the season against Golden Plains, hitting 10 3-pointers in that game.
Sides, who was also a first-team All-Area pick last year, finished the season with 73 3-pointers, making at least one trey in all but one game on the season. He helped the Huskies win a 1A Division II state championship as a junior.
Trey Sides 6-1 sr. Phillipsburg
Sides led Phillipsburg to an 18-3 record and Mid-Continent League title as he finished out one of the great careers in Panther history.
Sides, a 6-1 senior guard, averaged 16.7 points, 6.8 rebounds and 3.3 assists and 3.4 steals. He carried the load for a Phillipsburg team that lost some key pieces off the 2017-18 team that finished second in 3A.
Sides reached double figures in points in all but one game in his senior season. He scored a season-high 26 points in the MCL Tournament semifinal against Plainville before going for 22 the next night against Thomas More Prep-Marian to help the Panthers claim the conference tourney.
Sides, who has committed to Division I Jacksonville, hit 43 3-pointers on the year, hitting at least one 3 in each of his last 13 games.
Coach of the Year — Brandt Rogers, Ness City
In just his second season as Ness City boys basketball coach, Rogers guided the Eagles to their first state championship in program history.
It was a thrilling run for the Eagles, featuring a couple heart-pounding moments in sub-state and the Class 2A tournament.
Rogers saw several of his players come through clutch as the Eagles beat Lawrence Seabury, Inman and Hutchinson-Trinity in the 2A tournament. The Eagles never appeared fazed by the moment, winning five of their six postseason games by single digits.
Ness City turned in one of its best defensive efforts when it needed it most, holding Trinity to 55 points in a 12-point win in the state championship game.
The Eagles finished 22-4, winning 13 of their last 14 games.
Player Ht. Yr. School
Tanner Copeland 6-0 sr. Plainville
Zachary Eck 6-1 jr. Ellis
Conner Havlas 6-4 sr. Quinter
Darnell Holloway 6-4 sr. Osborne
Andres Rios 6-2 sr. Ness City
Player Ht. Yr. School
Brady Beougher 6-3 sr. Stockton
Ryan Karlin 5-10 sr. TMP-Marian
Trever Medina 5-10 sr. Wallace County
Maitland Wiltse 6-4 sr. Otis Bison
Kade Hemmert 6-2 sr. Oakley
Caden Bach, sr., Northern Valley; Jared Dible, sr., Hoxie; Brady Frickey, so., Ellis; Jace Markley, Weskan; Kade Melvin, jr., Norton; Brady Dinkel, jr., St. Francis; Dalen Journigan, Hill City; Jared Mayers, sr., TMP-Marian; Keagan Shubert, sr Trego; Ty Sides, so., Phillipsburg; Landon Reinhardt, sr., Ness City; Kyle Sasse, sr., Smith Center; Jackson Schulte, so., Thomas More Prep-Marian; Jordan Wherry, sr., Osborne; Steele Wolters, jr., Osborne.