June 21, 2021

Grant County Herald

Community news from the prairie to the lakes

Knight boys dish out awards

Grant Beuckens, Tate Christenson, Brady Reeve, Nathaniel Junker, Ryder Staples, Jacob Strunk, Xander Bontjes. (Not pictured) Cole Anderson. Photo by Kris Beukens

The WCA Knights held their basketball awards banquet on Sunday, April 11, to officially wrap up a successful 2021 season in which they finished with a 15-5 record. The Knights were the Section 6A South runners up. Head Coach Kraig Hunter applauded all of his players for their hard work and dedication throughout the season and handed out awards to individual players. Award winners (as pictured below) were: Grant Beuckens – All-Conference, Team Co-MVP; Tate Christenson – All-Conference, Mr. Hustle, Assist leader; Brady Reeve – All-Conference, FT% leader, Rebound leader, Team Co-MVP; Nathaniel Junker – Most Valuable Teammate; Ryder Staples – All-Conference, Most Improved Player; Jacob Strunk – Mr. Hustle Award; Xander Bontjes – Coach’s Award; Cole Anderson (not in Photo) – Hardest Worker Award.

The 2020-21 WCA Knights celebrated another successful season at their Awards Night this week.  Due to COVID-19, the season was shortened to 17 regular season games.  The Knights finished 13-4 in the regular season and made a nice playoff run making it to the South Sub-Section championship game and finishing 15-5 overall.  The Knights repeated as back-to-back conference champions in the Pheasant Conference.

The Knights were very dominant again this year, averaging 61 points per game while only giving up 43.5.  The 43.5 ppg allowed was good for #3 in the state of Minnesota Class A and was also a school record as was their Defensive FG percentage, allowing teams to only shoot 35.3 percent from the field.  They also set a school record for fewest turnovers per game at 9.5 as a team.

The Knights were led by an outstanding senior class.  Coach Kraig Hunter said, “Our outstanding class of seniors Grant Beuckens, Xander Bontjes, Tate Christenson, Nathaniel Junker and Brady Reeve were great players and great leaders.  They’ve had a few pretty successful seasons the past few years. Four winning seasons, a couple of conference titles, and a sub-section title.   They peaked down the stretch of the year and were playing some quality basketball on both ends by year end.  Some of the wins were over some high ranked opponents.  They were also a big part of the close team bond this team had.  We will miss them dearly as they are such quality people and were so valuable to our program.”

 The award winners were as follows:

Grant Beuckens – Co-MVP, Captain, All-Conference

Brady Reeve – CO-MVP, Captain, Chairman of the Boards, Free Throw Award, All-Conference

Tate Christenson – Co-Mr. Hustle, Captain, Assist Leader Award, All-Conference

Nathaniel Junker – Best Teammate

Xander Bontjes – Senior Coaches Award

Ryder Staples – Most Improved Player, All-Conference

Cole Anderson – Hardest Worker

Jacob Strunk – Co-Mr. Hustle           

 Other Letterwinners were: Tyler Biss, Peyton Hanson, Isaac Kreft, Roman Mihailovschi, Damon Sanstead, Cam Anderson, and Nasir Dotts.