Creston junior Jay Wolfe is one of three players unanimously selected to the Hawkeye 10 Conference boys basketball all-conference first team.
On the all-conference list released this week, Wolfe joins seniors Trey Lansman of Harlan and Sam Brincks of Kuemper Catholic as unanimous selections.
The only other player on the team who is not a senior is Denison-Schleswig junior Parker Eller, leaving Wolfe as the premier player returning in the conference in 2014-15.
Two other Panthers — senior point guard Cole Thompson and junior forward Alex Nielsen — received honorable mention.
Wolfe also earned third-team all-state honors this week. The versatile senior averaged 18.6 points and 7.2 rebounds per game. He made 49-of-124 shots from 3-point range for 39.5 percent and shot 75 percent from the free throw line for the 11-11 Panthers.
“We could play Jay anywhere from the point to the post, he’s so versatile,” Creston coach Billy Hiatt said. “As a junior he could still grow a little bit. I know he has some colleges talking to him now. It’s a great honor to be selected unanimously, and we expect big things from him next year.”
Other first-teamers were seniors Cole Neary of Kuemper Catholic, Nate Cave of Harlan and Gage Shatava of Glenwood.
Hiatt said he’s glad Thompson, a 5-11 senior, got recognition after his first year as full-time point guard for the Panthers. He contributed in many areas, averaging 7.1 points, and a team-high 3.1 assists and 2.6 steals.
“Cole was our best defender,” Hiatt said, “especially on the ball. In my opinion he was one of the best point guards in the conference, especially on the defensive end. It’s good for Cole to be recognized. He was so athletic, we could pressure with him, do the jump-switch stuff. He worked really hard in practice.”
Like Wolfe, Nielsen was versatile enough to be effective inside and still be a 3-point shooting threat. The 6-4 junior was second on the team at 10.4 points per game, along with 5.1 rebounds.
“Alex showed a lot of athleticism, too,” Hiatt said. “A couple games he scored in the 20s for us. He had some good rebounding games. When Jay went out in foul trouble or was subbed out, Alex could pick up the slack defensively on some of those top players. Toward the end of the year Alex would start out on some of those bigger guys to free up Jay a little. If he gets bigger and stronger next year he’ll do an even better job defending those tougher kids around the basket.”
Class 3A fourth-place Harlan and Kuemper Catholic tied for the conference crown. Creston was fourth at 6-4.
First team — *Sam Brincks, Sr., Kuemper Catholic; Cole Neary, Sr., Kuemper Catholic; *Trey Lansman, Sr., Harlan; Nate Cave, Sr., Harlan; Tony Rew, Sr., Lewis Central; *Jay Wolfe, Jr., Creston; Gage Shatava, Sr., Glenwood; Parker Eller, Jr., Denison-Schleswig.
Second team — Adam Juhl, Sr., Harlan; Gabe Ferry, Sr., Harlan; Lincoln Rodenburg, Sr., Lewis Central; Corey Bertini, Sr., Glenwood; Spencer Pauley, Jr., Denison-Schleswig; Makonn Anderson, So., Shenandoah; Ryan Hawkins, So., Atlantic; Ryan Leininger, Sr., Red Oak.
Honorable mention — Alex Gunnerson, Sr., Kuemper Catholic; Alex Drees, Sr., Kuemper Catholic; Mitch Moran, Jr., Lewis Central; Cole Thompson, Sr., Creston; Alex Nielsen, Jr., Creston; Jake Lewis, Jr., Glenwood; Nate Pardun, Sr., Denison-Schleswig; John McGinn, Sr., St. Albert; Travis Miller, So., St. Albert; Jackson Baker, Sr., Shenandoah; Joey Walker, Jr., Atlantic; Jason McCall, Sr., Clarinda.
Final standings (overall record) — Harlan 9-1 (23-4), Kuemper Catholic 9-1 (19-5), Lewis Central 8-2 (14-8), Creston 6-4 (11-11), Glenwood 5-5 (14-10), Denison-Schleswig 5-5 (11-10), Council Bluffs St. Albert Catholic 5-5 (12-11), Shenandoah 4-6 (13-10), Atlantic 2-8 (7-15), Clarinda 1-9 (7-16), Red Oak 1-9 (4-18).