Westosha’s Zackery in the zone

By Jason Arndt

A tighter defense and an eagerness to pick each other up have been two critical components in the scorching stretch produced by the Westosha Central High School boys basketball team, according to junior guard Jaeden Zackery, who has been in a zone his last seven games.

Jaeden Zackery

The Falcons, who extended their win streak with a 58-45 non conference decision at Waukesha West Tuesday, have held opponents to just under 50 points per game in 12 contests, including the lone loss to Kettle Moraine to open the season.

With the win, the Falcons jumped to 11-1 overall.

“The biggest part of our run has been our defense,” said Zackery, who produced a career-high 34 points at Kenosha Bradford Saturday. “It’s been really good and we are all playing aggressive.”

Last season, the Falcons kept opponents to 57 points per game through 12 games, where they compiled an 8-4 record.

Zackery, meanwhile, has averaged 20.9 points per game in the last seven games, including four 20 point contests.

While Zackery continued to put up points, others stepped in to bolster the Falcons charge, like junior Adam Simmons.

Simmons, a guard, notched a career-high 18 points in the Falcons’ 58-25 romp of Southern Lakes Conference rival Burlington on Jan. 9. In the last three games, he has knocked in double figures.

Along with Zackery and Simmons, the Falcons received help in the front court, where senior Cooper Brinkman and junior Dylan Anderson have shown poise.

Brinkman, a forward, picked up seven rebounds in the contest at Waukesha West, just two shy of his season-high set against Tremper on Dec. 20.

For Anderson, who knocked in a career best 24 points on Dec. 29, when the Falcons defeated Indian Trail 73-55 at Carthage, he snagged nine boards in the Dec. 20 Tremper tilt.

Senior guard Nic Frederick, meanwhile, continues to pace the offense with a team-leading 55 assists through 12 contests.

The collective effort, Zackery said, does not come as a surprise.

“If somebody’s having an off day or something, we are all there to pick them up,” he said. “That is what’s best about our team, we are all like brothers.”

The band brothers came together on Tuesday, defeating previously state-ranked Waukesha West, even when the Wolverines had a size advantage.

“Height was a big challenge for us, especially with getting rebounds,” Zackery said.

According to the WisSports.net Baseball Coaches Poll, the Wolverines were ranked No. 9 the week of Jan. 2, dropped to 10th the next week, before falling off the radar.

The Wolverines are 10-4 overall and 5-3 in the Classic Eight Conference.

Westosha Central 58, Waukesha West 45
Courtesy of a 24-8 first half, the Falcons coasted to a 58-45 non conference victory at Waukesha West Jan. 16, when Westosha Central received a team-leading 13 points from juniors Adam Simmons and Jaeden Zackery.

Zackery, coming off a career-high 34 point performance at Bradford, snagged a team-leading five steals along with collecting five rebounds and chipping in four assists.

For Simmons, who also had five rebounds, the junior chipped in two assists.

Frederick paced the offense, pitching in a team-high five assists.

In the paint, where the Falcons had 27 total rebounds, Brinkman led with seven and knocked in 10 points.

Westosha Central 86, Bradford 78
Courtesy of Zackery, who posted a career-high 34 points, collected six rebounds and pitched in eight assists, the Falcons edged host Bradford 86-78 Jan. 13.

Zackery’s previous career was set on Dec. 22, when he knocked in 25 points to help the Falcons defeat visiting Wilmot 78-57.

He also snagged five steals to lead the Falcons.

Along with Zackery, the Falcons low post duo of Anderson and Brinkman contributed 28 combined points.
Anderson, who had four rebounds, knocked in 15 points.

Brinkman, who converted both of his free throw attempts, pitched in 13.

Simmons, meanwhile, pitched in six assists and finished with 11 points.

Westosha Central 58, Burlington 25
Without an injured Nick Klug for the Demons, the Falcons took advantage of the Burlington on Jan. 9, when Westosha Central drubbed the Demons 58-25.

The Falcons, who held all Burlington scorers to single-digits, received a team-leading eight steals from Zackery.

Zackery, who added five rebounds and six assists, scored 17 points to finish second among Falcon scorers.

Simmons, the contest’s leader with 18 points, collected six rebounds and had five assists.


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