Bellville basketball earns three on all-district teams

Two more Brahmas add honorable mention, four garner academic all-district

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The Bellville Brahma basketball squad finished with a trio of athletes on all-district teams, had two more earn honorable mentions and was represented with four academic all-district distinctions.

Senior classmates Conner Poppe (first in points per game) and Blake Bills (third in points per game) took two of the first-team all-district roster spots alongside a pair from Navasota, and one from Caldwell and La Grange each.

Austin Leuschner (2nd in points per game) closed his Bellville basketball career off with second-team all-district and academic all-district honors.

Sophomore Robert Briggs (4th in points per game) and senior Kyler Froebel (5th in points per game) both earned honorable mentions as well as academic all-district distinction. Junior Logan Cruz was the fourth Brahma garnering academic all-district honors.

Bellville finished 7-4 in district play and third in the standings behind Navasota and Caldwell but ahead of La Grange. The Brahmas averaged 54.1 points per game, 28.9 rebounds per game and 12.4 assists per game.

The squad was led by five seniors who all scored more than 100 points in their swan songs: Poppe (325), Leuschner (289), Bills (189), Frobel (185) and Kase McKay (114). In addition, the sophomore Briggs (185) also joined them in the century club.

Head coach Ralph Almanza credited the elder statesmen for leading the group to all its successes over the years and shared some parting wisdom he left them with.

“(Can’t say enough about) how thankful I am for the memories they’ve given me and for the opportunity to watch them grow into the great young men they’ve become,” he said. “Very proud of their hard work and accomplishments over the last four years.

“As you graduate,” Almanza continued, “don’t forget what you have been taught, both on and off the playing field. Be a leader among family and friends. Be a leader in your community or on your campus. I wish you the best and will always be cheering for you.”

There was plenty to cheer on these seniors about, many of them leading the team in the scorebook.

Blake Bills (15) totaled 189 points and led the team with 130 rebounds alongside classmate Kyler Froebel. Bills’ 40 blocks were also a team best. Poppe led the team with 12.0 points per game and 325 total points, 153 of them coming from behind the arc (51 three-pointers made also led the team).

Leuschner finished his Brahma basketball career near the top of multiple stat categories. He was second in points (289) and three-pointers made (40) while finishing third in rebounds (104). Leuschner led the Brahmas in assists (104) and steals (54).

Despite graduating some key members, a handful of athletes will be returning from this year’s squad after sizeable contributions in another postseason run in Bellville.

Briggs was the top-scoring underclassman, he averaged 6.9 points per game, and hit 25 three-pointers. He also finished second in assists (56) and steals (45).

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