Shawano drops 2nd game in Sundrop Shootout

Richards scores 23, including 4 3-pointers, for Hawks

Leader photo by Jacy Zollar Shawano Community High School senior Kaden Richards attempts to shoot over Notre Dame’s Jackson Strohmeyer during the Hawks’ 77-64 loss at the Sundrop Shootout on Friday. Richards scored a team-high 23 points and four 3-pointers.

Shawano lost its second game at the Sundrop Shootout 77-64 to Notre Dame on Friday, but the team saw big improvement from their Wednesday loss to Mount Horeb.

“From the way we played Wednesday to now was definitely way better,” senior Kaden Richards said, “so I feel better about that. As a team we feel better about that. So even though we lost, we’re feeling pretty good about the way we played today.”

The Hawks dropped their first game to Mount Horeb 64-37. The main difference, according to the team, was aggression.

“We just went out and competed,” Richards said. “On Wednesday, the coaching staff kind of got on us and just told us that it looked like we didn’t care, and we took that personally. So we came out with fire under us today because we wanted to prove to ourselves and to the coaches that that’s not the team we are.”

“I thought we did a much better job of executing,” head coach David Ambrosius said. “We found our shooters a little bit better, but we were ultimately just much more aggressive tonight, we were attacking the bucket. The kids really came out and took the message after the Mount Horeb loss and just played aggresively.”

The two games played at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay Kress Center were especially memorable for Richards, as he is one of eight seniors that experienced the last time playing on the court.

“I love playing here,” Richards said. “It’s sad because this is my last time playing here being a senior. It’s definitely my favorite place to play. The atmosphere, the environment, the lighting, the hoops, the bigger court — everything about it is just awesome.”

Richards led scoring for the Hawks in both games, but nearly doubled his figures against Notre Dame. He scored 23 points against the Tritons to 12 points against Mount Horeb.

“I just looked for my shot today,” he said. “Just because I miss a shot doesn’t mean I’m just going to hunker up and go into a shell. I’m going to keep shooting because the coaches believe in me, my teammates believe in me. So I just did that today, just got aggressive.”

“He came out and did exactly what we know he’s capable of doing,” Ambrosius said. “When he gets going, there’s not a lot of guys that can stop Kaden, and I think he showed that tonight. He came out and was much more aggressive, and I think the rest of his teammates fed off of that.”

Richards drained four 3-pointers against the Tritons, including back-to-back shots with under two minutes to play.

“Those last shots felt great,” he said. “They were the kind of shots that you know they’re going in from the release.”

Junior Alex Mueller added 13 points for the Hawks, including 4 of 4 from the free-throw line, and Brad Bartz followed with nine points. Matt Rader led the Tritons with 26 points, followed by Avery Lyons with 17.

Despite the losses, Ambrosius ended the shootout with several takeaways for the team.

“These have been two really good tests,” he said. “Wednesday, we learned that we need to be more tough, more aggressive, and tonight we came out here and took care of that. So there are things we can do better from tonight’s game, but we’ll just take it one step at a time.

“It’s a long season, and we have a lot left to play, so if we continue improving like we have, I think we’ll be just fine come playoff time.”

Notre Dame (77)

Matt Rader 4-6 26; Jack Strohmeyer 4-6 14; Avery Lyons 1-3 17; Josh Cribben 0-0 2; Reese Johnson 2-4 7; Conner Hennigan 0-1 6; Tom Jensen 0-2 4.

Shawano (64)

Kaden Richards 1-2 23; Cole Nelson 4-7 7; Atty Wagner 2-2 4; Alex Mueller 4-4 13; Nick Grignon 1-2 1; Jacob Lacy 0-1 2; Brad Bartz 1-2 9; Dakota Maltby 3-4 5.

Notre Dame 36 41 — 77

Shawano 24 40 — 64