Men’s basketball adds 3 transfers, 8 incoming freshman to squad

Tomaz Farina Escosteguy and Joe Craker

This season will pose quite a challenge for the inexperienced WolfPack men’s basketball team.  Luckily for the team and fans, Head Coach Jamal Palmer has plenty of experience managing fresh faces.  In his fourth year with the team, Palmer is confident the young team will come together and achieve.

Just three players will be returning to the team from last season, when the WolfPack went 18-11, reached the Regional semifinals and broke even in N4C play at 7-7.  Even though there are lots of newcomers, the team has been working hard to develop positive connections. 

“We have had a month and a half to prepare ourselves and build some chemistry.  Although we are not there yet, we are on our way and things are starting to look good,” said Palmer.

In their first year for the team, all three returning players provided strong production across the board.  Sean Suchomel, a 6-foot, 2-inch tall shooting guard, averaged 9.4 points, 6 rebounds, 4.4 assists, and 1.2 steals per game.  He also clocked the most minutes on the floor over the season, displaying his reliability. 

Point guard Nathaniel Buss also averaged a strong 8.4 points, 3.4 assists, and 2.1 rebounds per game. 

The top scorer from last year will also be returning.  Guard/forward Alex Easterday recorded 11.1 points and 4.5 rebounds a game over the season.

Players new to the team include eight first-years as well as three transfer student-athletes. 

“We have brought in some scoring power in all different sorts of ways, and also have the ability to play solid defense,” said Palmer.

These players include big man Adam Anhold, a transfer from Bemidji State University.  The 6-8 forward attended high school at Janesville Craig, where he stood out both figuratively and literally on the court. 

The only other specified forward on the team is 6-6 true freshman Alex Berg, who played against Anhold during his high school career at Madison La Follette.

Although it will be a challenge, Palmer is hopeful for success this season. 

“The first part of our schedule is going to be against some high-level teams, but that doesn’t mean a whole lot to us.  We want to go out there, compete, leave it all on the court, and do everything we can to win,” he said.

Madison College men’s basketball begins their season with four road games followed by a four game home stand. The home opener is on Wednesday, Nov. 14, at H. Douglas Redsten Gymnasium, where they will play hosts to Sauk Valley Community College.

The WolfPack will begin N4C Conference play in the new year, home to Joliet Junior College on Jan. 3, and away at Rock Valley College on Jan. 5.  The opponents are ranked ninth and 10th, respectively, in the NJCAA Division III Polls, proving that conference play especially will serve as a challenge.

Regardless of the competition, fans can expect the ‘Pack to give it their all this season, and with strong coaching the possibilities are endless.