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Tigers reap rewards of historic season
Four players are All-SBC; Stekel named to All-Sportsmanship team
max stockwell
Max Stockwell powers his way to a basket in the final minutes of the Division 5 state final. Stockwell was named to the All-Scenic Bluffs Conference team. - photo by Nate Beier photo/

Fresh off the program’s first state tournament appearance, the Hillsboro Tigers reaped the rewards of their historic season when the Scenic Bluffs Conference announced its postseason awards early last week.

Juniors Max Stockwell and Joey Helgerson were named to the 10-player All-SBC first-team.

Junior forward Hunter Stanek and senior center Avery Rueckheim were among the 15 players who received honorable mention.

Senior Matt Stekel was named to the eight-player All-Sportsmanship team.

Stockwell, a do-everything 6-foot-5 forward led the Tigers in nearly every statistical category. He averaged 17.7 points, 8.2 rebounds, 2.3 assists and 1.8 steals, all team highs. He shot 53.7 percent (181-for-337) from the field, 58.4 percent (90-for-154) form the free throw line and 29.3 percent (17-for-58) from the 3-point line.

Stockwell is a three-year varsity player. He surpassed the 1,000-point mark in a regional semifinal victory over Royall on March 6. He finished the year with 1,102 career points. He was a first-team All-SBC selection last year and received honorable mention as a freshman.

Helgerson was Hillsboro’s starting point guard and floor general. He averaged 9.8 points, 2.3 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 1.6 steals per game. He shot 39.1 percent (90-for-230) from the field, a team-high 75 percent (45-for-60) from the field and 33.1 percent (40-for-121) from behind the 3-point line. Helgerson is a three-year varsity player. He was named honorable mention a year ago as a sophomore.

Stanek emerged as a force in the paint this winter averaging 8.3 points, 5.5 rebounds, 1.0 assists and 1.1 steals per game, while shooting 58.8 percent (90-for-153) from the field and 62.5 percent (50-for-80) from the free throw line.

The 6-foot-8 Rueckheim averaged 5.6 points, 3.9 rebounds and a team-high 1.4 blocks per game while leading the team with a 59.6 field goal percentage (68-for-114).

Stekel averaged 1.9 points and 2.4 rebounds per game in his final year as a Tiger while shooting 45.2 percent (19-for-42) from the field.

Hillsboro finished the year 23–6 overall, second in the SBC at 12–2 and advanced all the way to Saturday’s WIAA Division 5 state championship game before falling to Milwaukee Young Coggs Prep, 56–50.

Bangor senior Canon O’Heron was named the SBC Player of the Year for a second straight season to headline the SBC all-conference boy’s basketball team.

O’Heron averaged a conference-best 25.3 points per game, while leading the Cardinals in rebounds (220), assists (110), steals (47) and blocks (30). He averaged 9.2 rebounds, 4.6 assists, 2.0 steals and 1.2 blocks per game while shooting 57.3 percent (239-for-417) from the field, 67.2 percent (88-for-131) from the free throw line and 38.9 percent (37-for-95) from behind the arc.

Bangor went 21–3 overall and won a second straight conference title with a perfect 14–0 mark in SBC play.