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2016 Border Battle team previews

By Mark Miller, Wisconsin Basketball Yearbook, and Tim Kolehmainen, Breakdown Sports Media, 01/27/16, 10:30AM CST


Can Minnesota holds its edge as the series shifts to Wisconsin?


For more info contact:
Justin Hegna, Owner
Breakdown Sports USA
P.O. Box 10, Clear Lake, MN 55319
Phone: 612-454-1440


The 10th annual Minnesota/Wisconsin Border Battle pits some of the region’s best boys’ basketball teams head to head

The one-day, six-game showcase at Onalaska High School features several of the top recruits in both states, including University of Wisconsin-bound Kobe King of LaCrosse Central and DeLaSalle’s underclass tandem of Gabe Kalscheur and Goanar Mar

ONALASKA, Wisc. (Jan. 26, 2016) – Who has the best high school basketball, Minnesota or Wisconsin? High school basketball fans from the neighboring states looking for bragging rights need look no further than the BREAKDOWN SPORTS / WISCONSIN BASKETBALL YEARBOOK’s 10th annual Border Battle. The one-day showcase at Onalaska High School on Saturday, Jan. 30, 2016 features six games between top teams from both states going head-to-head.

The BREAKDOWN and WBBY have pulled together a terrific lineup that is highlighted by the top-ranked team in Wisconsin’s Division 1 (Stevens Point), with its dynamic senior duo of Trev Anderson and Sam Hauser, against Minnetonka with the strong back court of point guard Amar Miller and shooting guard Seth Coatta. Other top matchups include the top-ranked team in Minnesota’s Class 1A (Minneapolis North) against the host team from Onalaska, as well as four-time defending Class 3A state champion DeLaSalle versus LaCrosse Central, which is anchored by University of Wisconsin recruit Kobe King, the top junior in the state. Keep an eye on Jordan Horn and Tartan as they take on Eau Claire Memorial, as well as Lake City against Westby and Spring Grove versus Columbus Catholic. In all, we have more than 50 potential college recruits playing in the event, including many with Division 1 aspirations and talent.

Jan. 30, 2016 at Onalaska High School

Varsity Schedule
11:00 a.m. – Spring Grove vs. Columbus Catholic
12:45 p.m. – Lake City vs. Westby
2:30 p.m. – Tartan vs. Eau Claire Memorial
4:15 p.m. – DeLaSalle vs. LaCrosse Central
6:00 p.m. – Minneapolis North vs. Onalaska
7:45 p.m. – Minnetonka vs. Stevens Point

The MINNESOTA VS. WISCONSIN BORDER BATTLE is an annual event conceived by the BREAKDOWN and the WISCONSIN BASKETBALL YEARBOOK in the winter of 2006 as a way to pit some of the top teams from Minnesota and Wisconsin against each other at a site rotating between the two states. 

Through nine years, Minnesota holds a 29-22 advantage in the rivalry between the two states.  Wisconsin claimed a 3-2 edge in the first Border Battle held back in 2007 at Tartan High School, but Minnesota went 6-0 last year at Cretin-Derham Hall High School to break ahead.

BREAKDOWN SPORTS USA and its annual publications are Minnesota's No. 1 resource for players, coaches, fans and sports enthusiasts.  The BREAKDOWN is a full-service high school sports company, offering season preview publications, in-season premier events, off-season leagues, great photography and an extensive website with news and notes. 

It’s in its 14th year of covering boys’ and girls’ basketball, eighth in girls’ volleyball and boys’ hockey, and second in boys’ baseball.  The goal of the BREAKDOWN is simple: It wants to offer players, coaches and fans a complete sports resource for high school sports.

Please visit their website at  The staff welcomes all suggestions and comments for upcoming editions by email at

The WISCONSIN BASKETBALL YEARBOOK started in the summer of 1985 shortly after editor Mark Miller earned a bachelor's degree in journalism from the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh. After previewing a book similar in nature from Minnesota, Miller opted to start a state-wide basketball magazine detailing the high school and college scene in the Badger state. 

Twenty-seven years later, the WISCONSIN BASKETBALL YEARBOOK has become a staple for prep and college basketball fans from throughout the state.   Mark has also added several events over the years including the WBY Shootout, Border Battle, summer tournaments and the long running WBY Exposure Camp.

In March of 2006, the WISCONSIN BASKETBALL YEARBOOK joined forces with the Wisconsin Sports Network in a move designed to strengthen the future of both ventures. Please visit their website at



No press or media credentials will be accepted at the gate other than those with prior approval from the Breakdown and Wisconsin Basketball Yearbook. All photography or video taken at the event is for editorial purposes only. No resale of photographs or reproduction of images will be allowed without the written consent of Breakdown Sports USA, Inc. and the Wisconsin Basketball Yearbook.

RJ's take

The tenth anniversary of the Border Battle put on by The Breakdown and Wisconsin Basketball Yearbook will be played this weekend in Wisconsin at Onalaska High School.  After eight seasons of play Minnesota held a slight edge 23-22 but Minnesota swept the games last year winning all six.  Wisconsin is now home for the event and they hope to even up the score on their own turf. 

The feature match-up of the event?  That would have to be four time defending Class AAA champion DeLaSalle against La Crosse Central.  Both teams have a nationally ranked Rivals top 150 prospect as Islander Goanar Mar leads the Islanders with 20 points per game and 55 percent three point shooting (offers from Xavier, Iowa State, and others) while Kobe King is a Wisconsin Badger committed guard scoring 26 a night. 

Islander sophomore Gabe Kalscheur may soon join Mar and King as nationally ranked players while King’s sidekick Bailey Kale could also be a scholarship type talent.  DeLaSalle is ranked second in Minnesota while Central is third in Wisconsin.  Mar defending King in the backcourt would be something to see.

The team that many Wisconsin fans want to see is number one ranked Stevens Point.  The Panther are undefeated led by UWGB signed Trevor Anderson and Marquette signed Sam Hauser.  Add in nationally ranked Joey Hauser in the sophomore class and you have a Stevens Point squad that will bring a lot of trouble to the Minnetonka Skippers. 

That said, the Skippers won’t be intimidated.  This is a team that has already played the number one ranked big schools from Minnesota, and South Dakota (as well as one of the top teams in Iowa) and held their own. Another number one ranked team will be nothing new. Tonka doesn’t have the frontcourt to match the Panthers but they do have scholarship guards including NDSU signed Seth Coatta, the top senior lead guard in Minnesota in Amar Miller, and division one juco committed Cedric Boone.

Minneapolis North is the number one ranked small school in Minnesota but they don’t play a small school schedule.  They are 16-4 on the season playing mostly big school teams.  The Polars are a heavy favorite to win Class A this year and they have four guys with division one basketball offers (Tyler Johnson who will play football at Minnesota, Jamil Jackson, Pat Dembley, and Issac Johnson).  They take on host Onalaska who is 10-3 and led by junior guard Jalen Zubich.

Tartan is 13-4 on the season and has one of Minnesota’s more talented rosters led by Jordan Horn and Jarvis Thomas plus they have Noah Whalen who is a Wisconsin transfer.  Horn has a D1 offer from USD and will be an excellent match-up against Eau Clairie Memorial guard Isaac Appleby. 

Lake City and Spring Grove are two of the elite small schools from Minnesota’s southeast corner.  Spring Grove is ranked second in Minnesota’s smallest class of basketball and are led by junior Chase Grinde who scores 22 points a game.  Spring Grove will be bigger than undefeated Columbus Catholic but won’t have the guard depth of the Dons.  Lake City is a top ten team at 16-2 led by Brady Kuchinka who is headed to Waldorf College. The Tigers face 10-3 Westby led by junior Jesse Solberg.

— Ryan James

Team capsules - compiled by Mark Miller

WISCONSIN TEAMS (Updated 1/26/2016)

Columbus Catholic Dons (Marshfield)
Joe Konieczny, 11th year
Enrollment: 140

Top Players: Evan Nikolai (6-2, Sr., 15.3 ppg), Hunter Schultz (6-0, Jr., 19.5 ppg), Tyler Fuerlinger (6-1, Jr., 16.7 ppg), Nick Malovhr (5-10, Soph., 13.0 ppg), Billy Young (6-2, Sr., 5.1 ppg), Matthias Gouin (6-0, Sr., 4.8 ppg).
2015-16 Record: 13-0 (Through Jan. 25)
Notes: Columbus Catholic finished 15-9 last season, including 13-3 in the Eastern Division title of the Cloverbelt Conference ... The Dons are ranked No. 3 among WIAA Division 5 teams in the Coaches poll ... Nikolai, Schultz and Fuerlinger are all two-year starters for coach Joe Konieczny ... Columbus Catholic is not a tall team, but the Dons are very quick and like to play an up-tempo style.
Coach's Comments: "Quickness, depth and ball handling are strengths. Lack of size and rebounding are our biggest concerns."


Westby Norsemen
Coach: Bob Constalie, 26th year
Enrollment: 349
Top Players: Jesse Solberg (6-3, Jr., 18.1 ppg), Ross Stalsberg (6-7, Sr., 10.0 ppg), Travis Hofslien (6-2, Sr., 9.2 ppg), Shane Gran (6-1, Sr., 8.2 ppg), Nick Meyers (6-2, Sr., 3.2 ppg).
2015-16 Record: 10-3 (Through games of Jan. 25)
Notes: Westby competes in the Coulee Conference and is battling Gale-Ettrick-Trempealeau and Arcadia for the league championship ... Coach Bob Constalie has won over 400 games during his long coaching career ... Junior wing Jesse Solberg is enjoying a breakout season and can score from the perimeter and off the dribble.
Coach's Comments: "Experience, tradition, attitude and depth are strengths while quickness and defensive toughness are concerns."


Eau Claire Memorial Old Abes
 Greg Van Grunsven, 9th year
Enrollment: 1,696
Top Players: Isaac Appleby (6-2, Sr., 20.5 ppg), Darian Dieckman (6-0, Sr., 8.8 ppg), Cormac Sampson (6-4, Soph., 8.5 ppg), Reece Meier (6-3, Jr., 8.1 ppg), Storm Standiford (6-4, Sr., 6.0 ppg), Karl Buttel (6-6, Sr., 4.6 ppg).
2015-16 Record: 10-2 (Through games of Jan. 25)
Notes: Appleby and Buttel are returning starters from a squad that finished 13-10 a year ago ... Appleby is one of the top backcourt players in Wisconsin and is receiving recruiting interest from a number of NCAA Division II schools ... Appleby earned second-team all-Big Rivers Conference laurels as a junior ... The Old Abes lost to La Crosse Central, another Border Battle team representing Wisconsin, 61-50 in mid-December.
Coach's Comments: "Overall quickness and size are our strengths. We entered the season with a lack of varsity experience outside of Appleby and Buttel."


La Crosse Central Red Raiders
 Todd Fergot, 12th year
Enrollment: 1,066
Top Players: Kobe King (6-4, Jr., 26.1 ppg), Bailey Kale (6-0, Jr., 16.0 ppg), Noah Parcher (6-0, Frosh., 7.9 ppg), Aiden Austen (6-0, Sr., 6.1 ppg), Isaiah Dahlman (6-1, Jr., 7.5 ppg), Mitchell Lash (6-3, Jr., 3.9 ppg).
2015-16 Record: 11-2 (Through games of Jan. 25)
Notes: The Red Raiders are ranked No. 3 among WIAA Division 2 schools in the Coaches poll, behind New Berlin Eisenhower and Kaukauna ... King has committed to the University of Wisconsin and is the top-ranked class of 2017 prospect in the state in the player rankings on ... King and Kale are both three-year varsity performers for coach Todd Fergot and form one of the elite backcourt duos in the state. 
Coach's Comments: "Ball handling, shooting and experience are among our strengths while lack of size at some positions is a concern."


Onalaska Hilltoppers
 Craig Kowal, 8th year
Enrollment: 897
Top Players: Jalen Zubich (5-10, Jr., 17.8 ppg), Noah Fredrickson (5-10, Jr., 13.1 ppg), Jalen Sample (6-4, Jr., 9.3 ppg), Tyler Turriff (6-2, Jr., 8.5 ppg) Noah Skifton (6-0, Soph., 6.8 ppg), Alex Olson (6-3, Sr., 5.6 ppg).
2015-16 Record: 10-3 (Through games of Jan. 25)
Notes: The Hilltoppers play sound team defense and move the ball well on offense ... Coach Craig Kowal, who guided Onalaska to the WIAA Division 2 state title in 2012, counts heavily Zubich, a three-year starter who competes with great basketball instincts while also scoring at a high level ... Sample has turned in a very strong junior season after growing several inches over the past 12 months.
Coach's Comments: "Perimeter shooting, ball handling and experience are strengths. This group is highly skilled and committed. We do lack size so reobunding is always a concern."


Stevens Point Panthers
Scott Anderson, 7th year
Enrollment: 2,078
Top Players: Trev Anderson (6-2, Sr., 26.2 ppg, 4.7 apg), Sam Hauser (6-6, Sr., 18.1 ppg, 9.6 rpg), Joey Hauser (6-7, Soph., 18.8 ppg, 7.6 rpg), Jamison Kryshak (5-11, Sr., 3.6 ppg), Jake Hofmeister (6-0, Sr., 3.4 ppg), Drew Blair (6-2, Soph., 4.4 ppg), Evan Mallek (6-3, Sr., 2.8 ppg). 
2015-16 Record: 14-0 (Through games of Jan. 25)
Notes: The Panthers are ranked No. 1 among Division 1 schools in Wisconsin behind the stellar play of the state's top two senniors -- Trev Anderson and Sam Hauser ... Anderson has signed with Green Bay while Hauser is headed to Marquette ... Both players are four-year starters and clutch players for Stevens Point, which also features the state's top-ranked sophomore in 6-foot-7 forward Joey Hauser, the younger brother of Sam ... Stevens Point is the defending WIAA Division 1 state champion.
Coach's Comments: "Shooting, passing, ball security, defense, togetherness, experience and depth are strengths. Interior defense and rebounding are our concerns."



Spring Grove Lions
Wade Grinde
Enrollment: 77
Top Players: Chase Grinde (6-3, Jr., 22.3 ppg), Alex Engelhardt (6-3, Sr., 10.9 ppg), Brock Schuttemeier (6-2, Jr., 9.8 ppg), Brady Schuttemeier (6-3, Sr., 9.8 ppg), Alex Folz (5-9, Frosh., 7.2 ppg). 
2015-16 Record: 15-1 (Through Jan. 25)
Notes: The Lions compete in the 11-team Southeast Conference and are ranked No. 2 among Class 1A schools in Minnesota ... The Lions lost a 69-66 decision to Lake Mills in the Tri-State Border Battle held January 9 at the Just A Game Fieldhouse in Wisconsin Dells.


Lake City Tigers
 Greg Berge
Enrollment: 350
Top Players: Brady Kuchinka (5-11, Sr., 23.2 ppg), Marc Kjos (5-9, Soph., 10.4 ppg), Eli Custer (6-3, Sr., 9.0 ppg), Jesse Oliver (6-0, Sr., 8.4 ppg), Mitch Marien (5-8, Jr., 5.2 ppg), Matt Kjos (6-0, Sr., 3.8 ppg).
2015-16 Record: 16-2 (Through games of Jan. 25)
Notes: The Tigers are ranked No. 5 among 2A schools in Minnesota and compete in the Gold Division of the Hiawatha Valley Conference.


Tartan Titans
 Mark Klingsporn
Enrollment: 1,382
Top Players: Jordan Horn (6-2, Jr., 17.4 ppg), Joevon Walker (6-4, Jr., 11.3 ppg), Noah Whalen (6-3, Jr., 10.7 ppg), Elijah Johnson (6-4, Sr., 9.6 ppg), Jarvis Thomas (6-7, Soph., 9.1 ppg), Jordan Thompson (6-1, Jr., 6.9 ppg), Kingston Myles (6-2, Jr., 6.1 ppg).
2015-16 Record: 13-4 (Through games of Jan. 25)
Notes: The Titans compete in the highly competitive Metro East Conference ... Horn is receiving NCAA Division I recruiting interest from North Dakota State and South Dakota State, among others.


DeLaSalle Islanders
 Dave Thorson
Enrollment: 696
Top Players: Gabe Kalscheur (6-3, Soph., 20.2 ppg), Goanar Mar (6-7, Jr., 19.9 ppg), Sage Booker (6-0, Soph., 7.8 ppg), Sam Jones (6-0, Sr., 7.9 ppg), Christian Dickson (6-2, Soph., 5.6 ppg).
2015-16 Record: 10-3 (Through games of Jan. 25)
Notes: DeLaSalle has won the past four class 3A state championships in Minnesota and competes in the Tri-Metro West Conference ... The Islanders are ranked No. 1 among class 3A schools this season ... Mar is a three-start recruit on and has interest from Iowa, Iowa State, Marquette, Minnesota and Wisconsin, among others.


Minneapolis North Polars
 Larry McKenzie
Enrollment: 199
Top Players: ODell Wilson IV (6-5, Soph., 13.6 ppg), Isaac Johnson (6-4, Jr., 13.7 ppg), Jamil Jackson (6-6, Sr., 14.4 ppg), Patrick Dembley (6-3, Sr., 14.6 ppg), Ahzerik Rodgers (6-1, Jr., 7.9 ppg), JaQuan Sanders-Smith (6-1, Jr., 8.9 ppg).
2015-16 Record: 16-4 (Through games of Jan. 25)
Notes: Minneapolis North is ranked No. 1 among 1A schools in Minnesota and competes in the Minneapolis City Conference ... Minneapolis North lost to Hopkins, 98-96, on Jan. 19. Hopkins is the top-ranked Class 4A school in Minnesota. 


Minnetonka Skippers
 Ryan Martin
Enrollment: 1,273
Top Players: Amar Miller (5-9, Sr., 23.4 ppg), Seth Coatta (6-3, Sr., 16.6 ppg), Max Cooper (6-5, Sr., 11.3 ppg), Cedric Boone (6-0, Sr., 12.9 ppg), Burt Hedstrom (6-3, Jr., 6.9 ppg), Matt Haas (6-4, Jr., 5.3 ppg).
2015-16 Record: 13-6 (Through games of Jan. 25)
Notes: Minnetonka is a 4A school that competes in the Lake Conference ... Coatta has committed to NCAA Division I North Dakota State.

‚ÄčAt Onalaska High School
January 30, 2016

11:00 a.m. -- Marshfield Columbus Catholic (WI) vs. Spring Grove (MN)

12:45 p.m. -- Westby (WI) vs. Lake City (MN)

2:30 p.m. -- Eau Claire Memorial (WI) vs. Tartan (MN)

4:15 p.m. -- La Crosse Central (WI) vs. DeLaSalle (MN)

6:00 p.m. -- Onalaska (WI) vs. Minneapolis North (MN)

7:45 p.m. -- Stevens Point (WI) vs. Minnetonka (MN)

2016 Border Battle schedule

Time MN Team WI Team
11 a.m. Spring Grove Columbus Catholic
12:45 p.m. Lake City Westby
2:30 p.m. Tartan Eau Claire Memorial
4:15 p.m. DeLaSalle La Crosse Central
6:00 p.m. Minneapolis North Onalaska
7:45 p.m. Minnetonka Stevens Point

Border Battle history

Border Battle history


Wis 3 - Minn 2
(At Tartan High School)
Wisconsin Rapids 59 - Tartan 44
Minnetonka 73 - Memorial 61
Seymour 73 - Patrick Henry 66
Aquinas 93 - Rockford 68
St. Bernard's 73 - Randolph 64


Wis 3 - Minn 2
(At Verona High School)
Waupun 83 - Princeton 44
Madison Memorial 78 - Minnetonka 69
Verona 68 - Tartan 64
Rockford 88 - Marshall 61
Maranatha Christian 65 - Barneveld 41


Minn 3 - Wis 2
(At Owatonna High School)
Benton 81 - Bethlehem Academy 73
Roncalli 91 - Plainview-Elgin-Millville 83 (4 OT)
De LaSalle 73 - Sussex Hamilton 65 (OT)
Henry Sibley 57 - Kaukauna 55
Owatonna 65 - Wisconsin Rapids 58


Minn 5 - Wis 0
(At Eau Claire Memorial)
Minnehaha Academy 67 - Blair-Taylor 64 (OT)
Transitions Charter 58 - Fall Creek 54
Minneapolis North 47 - Regis 40
Stillwater 41 - Eau Claire North 28
Forest Lake 61 - Eau Claire Memorial 48


Minn 3 - Wis 3
(At St. Cloud Tech)
Rice Lake 66 - Apollo 63
Roncalli 64 - Rocori 54
Aquinas 71 - St. Cloud Cathedral 64
St. Cloud Tech 71 - Baldwin-Woodville 57
Hopkins 93 - Madison East 53
Tartan 62 - Seymour 59


Wis 5 - Minn 1
(At Sun Prairie)
Sun Prairie 61 - De LaSalle 35
Waunakee 66 - Tartan 65
Wisconsin Dells 61 - Maple River 47
Grand Rapids 71 - Beaver Dam 65 (3 OT)
Gale-Ettrick-Trempeleau 71 - Maranatha Christian 54
Edgewood 70 - North St. Paul 59


Minn 7 - Wis 0
(At Prior Lake)
Mahtomedi 77 - Regis 49
Eden Prairie 59 - Roncalli 44
Hopkins 85 - De Pere 70
DeLaSalle 65 - Appleton West 43
Osseo 76 - Hudson 45
Prior Lake 66 - Rice Lake 53
Apple Valley 81 - Madison Memorial 60


Wis 6, Minn 0
(At Kaukauna)

Pacelli 53 - Rockford 50
Waupun 47 - Byron 42
Pius XI 65 - Simley 48
Stevens Point 76 - Lakeville North 58
Seymour 61 - Blake 38
Kaukauna 58 - Centennial 52


Minn 6, Wisc 0
(At Cretin-Derham Hall)

Heritage Christian 68, Columbus Catholic 55
Waseca 76, West Salem 77
Minnehaha Academy 72, Gale-Ettrick-Trempeleau 65
Hopkins 108, Milwaukee Vincent 81
DeLaSalle 73, Kimberly 61
Cretin-Derham Hall 69, Stevens Point 60


Minn 5, Wisc 1
(At Onalaska HS)

Spring Grove 83, Columbus Catholic 69
Lake City 63, Westby 57
Tartan 64, Eau Claire Memorial 61
DeLaSalle 56, La Crosse Central 51
Minneapolis North 84, Onalaska 62
Stevns Point 88, Minnetonka 65


Minn 6, Wisc 1
(At Apple Valley HS)

Columbus Catholic 96 - Springfield 83
Minnehaha Academy 81 - Prescott 73
Tartan 80 - Whitefish Bay 53
Cretin-Derham Hall 71 - Stevens Point 68
DeLaSalle 97 - Kaukauna 65
Lakeville North 98 - La Crosse Central 83
Apple Valley 66 - Milwaukee Riverside 46


Wisc 5, Minn 2
(At Stevens Point Area HS)

De Soto 38 - Heritage Christian 27
Stevens Point Pacelli 61 - Spring Grove 48
Lake City 84 - Prescott 77
Kaukauna 122 -- Minneapolis North 103
Appleton Xavier 74 - Minnetonka 59
La Crosse Central 65 - North St. Paul 60
Minnehaha Academy 73 - Stevens Point 68


Minn 5, Wisc 2
(At East Ridge HS)

MN Valley Lutheran 58 - Thorp 45
Lake City 73 - Clear Lake 54
St. Croix Lutheran 82 - Whitefish Bay 74
Waupun 94 - Rochester Mayo 68
Brookfield East 91 - Apple Valley 59
Minnehaha Academy 73 - Onalaska 60
East Ridge 80 - Brookfield Central 62


Minn 5, Wisc 2
(At La Crosse Central HS)

Stratford 60 - Spring Grove 39
Lake City 99 - Brookfield Academy 68
Rochester Mayo 93 - Eau Claire North 80
Mahtomedi 69 - Kaukauna 68
Austin 82 - Milwaukee Washington 53
(At UW-La Crosse, Mitchell Hall)
Minnehaha Academy 73 - La Crosse Central 64
Onalaska 60 - Lakeville North 44


cancelled due to COVID-19


Wisc 4, Minn 2
(At Mpls North HS)

Maranatha Christian 74, Rice Lake 48
Eau Claire Memorial 84, Richfield 63
Pewaukee 78, Robbinsdale Armstrong 52
Menomonee Falls 83, Totino-Grace 70
Wisconsin Lutheran 78, Minnehaha Academy 60
Minneapolis North 62, Brookfield East 59

NOTE: Minnesota leads 54-37 through 16 years of the Border Battle.