EDITOR'S NOTE: The Swnews4u.com Athlete of the Week is a web-only feature that will publish each Thursday throughout the calendar year.
Sami Martin, Sr., C and Josie Nies, Sr., PG, Platteville girls basketball
PLATTEVILLE — It was a milestone week for Platteville seniors Sami Martin and Josie Nies and the rest of the undefeated top-ranked Hillmen. Platteville recorded its 16th straight win with a 74–30 blowout victory over visiting Richland Center last Tuesday night.
Martin scored 18 points and with a short jumper in the lane with 7:42 left in the first half became the program’s all-time leading scorer. Monday night Nies scored 17 points in a 64–34 rout of SWAL-leading Cuba City and with a 3-pointer from the right wing early in the second half became just the fourth player in program history to scored 1,000 career points. In between, Martin, Nies along with classmates Becca Hoyer, Izzy Carroll, Courtney Budden, Allison Cooley and Morgan Mumm were honored for Senior Night prior to a 57–33 SWC victory over visiting Dodgeville.
Martin scored back-to-back baskets to open last Tuesday’s win over the Hornets as Platteville (18–0, 7–0) raced out to a 15–0 lead and never looked back. Martin added a free throw five minutes into the game, then became Platteville’s all-time leading scorer on a pull-up jumper with 7:42 left in the first half. The game was stopped momentarily as Martin was congratulated by her teammates and coaches, then ran to the top of the bleachers to hug her parents Shawn and Rachel Martin. Martin eclipsed the previous school record of 1,381 points held by 1993 PHS graduate Nicki (Taggart) Collen, who went on to play college basketball at Purdue and Marquette and is now the head coach of the WNBA’s Atlanta Dream.
“With Sami Martin breaking the all-time scoring record it says a lot about the success of the Platteville girls’ basketball program,” said Platteville head coach Mike Foley. “Even though this is an individual career milestone for Sami, this could not have been completed by any single individual. It took an entire team of unselfish play to eclipse the school’s scoring record.”
Martin, a 6-foot-2-inch forward who will play at Division 1 Bradley on a full scholarship, finished Tuesday’s game with a double–double of 18 points and 16 rebounds. Nies scored a game-high 21 points and had seven assists, six rebounds and four steals in the game. Hoyer added 13 points and six boards.
Martin and Nies again led the way in Friday’s Senior Night win over Dodgeville. Martin scored 19 points and grabbed eight rebounds, while Nies added 18 points, seven assists and six steals. Hoyer chipped in nine points, seven boards and four assists, and Carroll grabbed a team-high 11 rebounds. Monday at Cuba City, the Hillmen had little trouble with the first-place Cubans (12–4) racing to a 37–16 halftime lead en rout to an 18th-straight victory.
Martin scored 16 of her game-high 24 points in the first half as Platteville opened up a 37–16 halftime advantage. Martin also grabbed seven rebounds and helped hold Cuba City’s D1 Illinois–Chicago recruit Bailey Lutes to just seven points.
Nies scored 12 points in the first half, then hit a 3-pointer from the right wing with 14:17 left in the game to give Platteville a 46–18 lead. The host Cubans graciously stopped the game momentarily so Nies could be congratulated by teammates and coaches. She also took a brief moment to hug her parents Bart and Jolene Nies. Nies also became the fourth player in program history to reach 1,000 career points with the basket, joining Martin (1,436 and counting), Taggart (1,381) and 2001 graduate Kimberly Becker, who went on to play at UW–Milwaukee.
“Josie Nies reaching the 1,000-point mark in her career is remarkable, because it shows that hard work does pay off,” said Foley. “Josie spent hours upon hours in the gym in the offseason to improve her individual game that has paid dividends to her team. She has increased her scoring from 11 points per game last year to 14.6 per game this year. She has also improved her free throw shooting from 46 percent from a year ago to 73 percent this season. This is a great milestone for Josie, however, her team played an important role in Josie receiving this recognition. Her teammates trust her in running the offense and being the floor leader.”
Nies finished Monday’s game with 17 points and a game-high six assists. Nies is averaging 5.9 assists, 2.4 steals and only 1.9 turnovers per game this year.
HONORABLE MENTION (in alphabetical order):
Cole Crubel, Sr., G, River Ridge basketball
Crubel erupted for a single-game school record 37 points in Friday's 60–56 loss to #5-ranked Monticello. Crubel also scored a game-high 22 points, including three 3-pointers, in a key 46–38 victory over Benton last Tuesday night. With the win Crubel and the Timerbwolves improved to 8–0 in the Six Rivers West, taking a two-game lead on second-place Potosi (6–2).
Anna Kartman, Sr., F, Potosi/Cassville girls basketball
Kartman scored a 14 of her game-high 20 points in the second half, including eight straight, to help the Chieftains rally for a 50–44 non-conference victory at Wauzeka–Steuben after blowing a 28–20 halftime lead. It was Potosi/Cassville's (10–6) seventh straight victory after beginning the season 3–6.
Holden Murphy, Sr., G, Benton boys basketball
Murphy averaged 21 points per game as the Benton Zephyrs went 2–1 on the court. He scored a game-high 24 points with four 3-pointers in the 50–41 win over Argyle during the 2020 Six Rivers Conference Boys Basketball Crossover Challenge on Friday. He also led the Zephyrs with 17 points and three 3s in a 46-38 loss to Six Rivers West leader River Ridge last Tuesday, and scored a team-high 22 points with four more 3s in a 73-64 non-conference win over the previously unbeaten and Division 5 #4-ranked Monticello Ponies on Monday.
Kolten Wallin, Sr., PG, Boscobel boys basketball
Wallin made six 3-pointers and scored a team-high 23 points, including the game-winning free throw with three seconds left to lift the host Bulldogs to a stunning 66–65 upset victory over #7 Fennimore. After the Eagles tied the game with 31.7 seconds to play, Wallin found a crease and drove to the basket, where he was fouled as his shot barely rolled off the rim. The senior guard calmly went to the line with 3 seconds left on the clock, and sank the first free throw for a 66–65 lead. Wallin then intentionally missed the second free throw, sliced in between two Fennimore players to grab the ball, which he quickly fired out to his teammate Tarek Fischer who held it as the clock ran out and the Boscobel crowd erupted over the upset victory.